PSP discontinued in Japan just shy of its 10th birthday

And now the end is near, and so the PlayStation Portable faces the final curtain. The Sony handheld says sayonara to Japan later this month, when shipments to the country's stores will officially end.

Sony announced the news today, noting it discontinued North American shipments back in January. The company told Associated Press the PSP is to continue in Europe until later this year, while The Verge adds there are no discontinuation plans yet for lines in Latin America and other Asian countries.

The PSP's farewell to its homeland comes nine and a half years after it launched there on December 12, 2004. While history will remember it as second-best to the uber-popular DS, the Sony handheld's numbers ain't to be sniffed at. As of March 2012 it had shipped 76.3 million units worldwide, a figure that's probably closer to 80 million now if not beyond. The PSP also brought us the sheer joy of Patapon as well as the resultant joy of Pata-puns, and for that alone it'll always pata-pata-pata-pon in our hearts.
[Image: Sony]

This article was originally published on Joystiq.