Sony Announces UMD Passport Program
Ever since Sony's PSP handheld launched, people have wondered "If all the pirates can back up their games on the memory stick, why can't I?" Now it seems Sony will finally allow players to download digital copies of their favorite UMD games using the UMD Passport program, right in time for the Vita's launch.
First, gamers will have to download the UMD Passport program for their device, then insert the UMD they'd like a digital copy of. After registering the game with Playstation Network, they'll be able to download the game... for a fee!?
According to reports, the program will charge anywhere between $5 and $20 to get a digital copy of a game, which kind of sullies the whole experience. The program is currently Japan-only, so we're not sure whether the same pricing model will be used in the States. That being said, paying twice for the same item is not something we're a fan of. Then again, if PSN is unable to track individual UMDs, it could mean that players could simply trade games in order to get as many downloads as possible, and the fees seek to combat this. Hopefully we'll have more details on the program when the Vita launches in February.
Source: Giant Bomb