Sony has confirmed that it will be launching a white version of its handheld device, the PSP later this year. However, the new model, which was originally demoed at E3 last year will only be available in Japan.

While the UK waits patiently for its first batch, Japanese gamers will be able to get their hands on the new coloured console on the 15 September at a suggested retail price of 26,040 yen (£134.460).

Similar to previous offerings, the white console will be sold as part of a value pack that will include the unit, an AC adapter, a battery pack, a 32MB Memory Stick Duo, headphones, a remote control, a pouch, and a hand strap.

Sony has said that the ceramic white version will not be available in either America or Europe.

The company has a history of selling different coloured units in different territories and the PS2 has been released in Aqua, Yellow, White and Silver in the past.

Rumours of further colours have been fuelled with a statement by SCEJ in a press release that referred to the new white model saying: "To provide more fun as a personal system, SCEJ will introduce various new colors for PSP and its accessories."

Sony has also announced that it will be releasing a firmware update in Japan so that users can surf the internet directly from the console. Previously users wishing to do so have had to download and install a rather complicated hack which took advantage of a hole in the operating system used by certain games.

No date has been as to whether US and soon European customers will get the update. In the past all Japanese firmware updates have later been released in Europe and America following a Japanese roll-out.