There have been rumors about a PSP redesign, but now 1UP.com claims sources directly involved with the project have told them that Sony will unveil the latest variant of its portable gaming console at the E3 conference this coming June.
Image courtesy of 1UP.com. Note: This is not the actual PSP
According to their sources, Sony will "forgo a numerical moniker in favor of a subtitle". So you wouldn't see a 'PSP-4000' anytime too soon. 1UP.com speculates that this new system would be called the PSP Go!, in keeping with the Go! brand of add-ons released for the European PSP. Sources have also said that the model will be available in two SKUs, with either an 8 GB or 16GB internal flash memory.
Wait, 8GB/16GB internal memory? That's right. You would need all that space now that the new PSP will no longer play UMDs. All titles for the PSP would be available as downloads instead. As for the hardware, the button layout will remain faithful to the older generations of PSPs and will not include dual analogue sticks, as rumored by many fans. It would feature a sliding mechanism (as pictured above).
1UP.com also speculates that Sony could be integrating the Mylo's design into the new PSP, and hence could feature a touch screen and a camera.
Well it is no surprise that Sony has finally decided to redesign its PSP, as it faces stiff competition from newly released Nintendo DSi and iPod Touch/iPhone. Many rumors were flowing around back when the PSP 3000 was released, of a redesigned PSP which would be released in 2011. The real surprise here is that Sony has opted for 'sooner' rather than 'later'.