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Monday, January 26, 2004
Sony to release upgrade for PSX

Sony announced that the release a firmware upgrade for Sony PSX. This first update, which restores much of the functionality that was removed from the original specification before Christmas, will be made available online at the beginning of February, while for those who haven't connected their PSX to the Internet, a version on CD will be available later in the month.

The first step in building confidence over the product, however, is restoring the originally promised specification. Included in the first upgrade is compatibility with TIFF images and MP3 music, as well as a module allowing compatibility with USB keyboards and an increase in the speed at which video can be recorded to DVD to 24x.

All of these upgrades are part of the original PSX specification, but were stripped out late last year in order to ensure that the system launched in time for Christmas. At the time, there were howls of protest from media commentators and analysts alike, but Sony has always maintained that the reduction was a temporary one, and it didn't seem to adversely affect sales of the PSX over Christmas.

A second update is planned for March, which will restore compatibility with the GIF image format, DVD+RW discs, the Sony Cybershot camera and PlayStation network gaming (the system possesses a network port but currently isn't capable of using it for PS2 online games).

A firm launch date for the PSX in Europe has yet to be set, but it's expected to roll out later this year - and will almost certainly include the entire feature set as originally announced when it appears on these shores.

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