Sony PSP

Handheld gaming machine set for midnight release

Sony's new PlayStation Portable is getting the midnight-release treatment reserved for the most hyped of pop culture products. But it remains to be seen if the handheld entertainment system lives up to consumer expectations. Sony hopes the sleek, portable system -- which allows users to play games, view movies and pictures and listen to digital audio -- will transcend the traditional young, male gaming demographic. The company says it's stocked retailers in North America with a million units for the midnight launch. A Sony spokesman says there are additional supplies if the initial units are sold out on the first day. The company plans to increase production by the middle of the year.