Sony’s PlayStation Now Service Feels Like Highway Robbery

The problem with the PlayStation Now service is that Sony, at least at this moment, seems very confused about what they want Now to become. Despite having an undeniably brilliant idea on their hands, allowing the millions of PlayStation 4 owners to rent titles digitally, Sony has dropped the ball from an early stage, demanding prices that are ludicrous to the point that there is virtually no defending them.

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Xsilver1114d ago

ok Sony it's time to go to a Subscription Plan.

Mikelarry1114d ago

they are going to have to whether they like it or not, especially now that EA has come out with access if it catches on with other publishers sony will lose big time as they have invested too much in now to let it become a failure. also the subscription prices needs to be reasonable

iamnsuperman1114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )

PS Now is NOT like EA access. EA access require the user to run the game locally (downloaded it and play it) which is unlike PS Now (which is a streaming service) as PS Now can theoretically run on less capable devices. EA access is just plus but just for EA titles (exactly the same model)

Now Sony will have to go to a subscription model not because of EA access. But because no one will be using it and Sony invested a lot in the tech

Vitalogy1114d ago

What I dislike the most is the fact that they're charging for a beta, wanting for people to pay to test? But I honestly don't even blame them, I blame those who are actually paying for it.

You want people to test your service, you make it properly and don't charge for it.

Muerte24941114d ago

I don't think you're understanding the difference between the two. EA access is similar to PS+ as it allows you to get some games for free and discounts for the others. PS Now is comparable to Gaikai and OnLive. Each publisher sets their own prices.

"Variable pricing is in place because Sony gave the publishers and developers free reign to set their own prices, which results in wildly disparate costs for different games and different periods of rental time. It’s not even mandatory that you have to have all four categories of rental time."

Mikelarry1114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )


I think you read my comment wrong. I never mentioned that EA access was like psnow, what I meant was if the publishers get on board with going the access route Sony will lose big time as they make some profits from publishers using their platform to reach consumers.

Are you that naive to believe EA access is not a threat to Sony psnow. EA access will be the first of many and if Sony is smart they will try to get ahead of the curve to entice both publishers and consumers to stick to Sony platform

@ iammsuperman:

guess we will have to see how this plays out

@ death

very good point, i cant speak for anyone but myself about not having realistic expectation for this service because i am for $5 a month to stream all games. i think it also does not help that most gaming media and gamers associate this to netflix so we some how expect the affordability and flexibility of netflix to apply here

iamnsuperman1114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )


I think the biggest difference is EA will have no choice but to support PS Now or other similar services unless they create their own streaming service. PS Now is being poised to turn up on Tvs, phones you name it. EA access has a limited scope that can't tap those areas of revenue (due it needed to be run locally). EA is unlikely to deny getting paid just because they have a service that needs a capable machine to work. They are more likely to deny plus access as both service require the same thing to work. EA access is no threat to PS Now but plus

Death1114d ago

The problem Sony will face with PSNow is creating value for the customer while making a profit with the service. Gamers seem to be settling on $14.99-$19.99 a month for a subscription. Seems like a fair price on the customer side, but Sony will not make money offering 100+ games for about $.10 a piece. Games are consumable with many gamers beating them and moving to the next. While unlikely anyone will play 122 games in a month, once they do play all the games they like what is the incentive to keep subscribing? The best bet is to offer a selection of 100+ games, but offer a cap on how many can be streamed a month if they go with a subscription plan. Possibly with 5 games in a month for $14.99 which makes each game $3. Even then the amount Sony makes would be very small and may not cover the ocsts of the service.

I don't think gamers have a realistic expectation of the costs incurred to do this. It is very possible the existing customer base is not the target audience for PSNow. It's my opinion that PSNow will compete with the PS4 over customers with more casual gamers not interested in buying hardware being the target audience for the service.

dc11114d ago

If other publishers do the same then we (consumers) lose.
5 different plans for each of the major publishers = a potential 20.00 per month or 200+ per year.

EA's service is competing with PS+ not ps now.


What I don't like about PS Now, is the streaming. Everyone who has played it says it runs a mostly solid 30fps, but the slight streaming compression of 720p makes it worse. Downloading the title would look better, BUT that is the problem with older gen games and the new X86 (64bit)arch. They have to stream older games :/

EData1114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )

PS Now is about convenience, and hopefully, value, that is the selling point, just like Netflix. Of course you could go buy all the games used for cheap, you could buy Netflix movies exactly the same way. PS Now's library will grow just like it already has drastically.

I see no reason why Sony could charge $15 - $20 and not make profit, even if it is a relatively smallish profit in the beginning. There is no doubt in my mind this service could be a hit.

morganfell1114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )

@Vitalogy - so you do not believe in early access for games either? Suppose I look at your post history? Would I find a similar opinion on that?

Death is absolutely correct. Anyone that thinks Sony can make even a nickle on a $20 a month subscription is wrong. Sony would lose tons of money.

Think of it this way. You can finish most AAA games in a day, minus multiplayer. Theoretically - because that is the manner in which publishers participating in Now will look at it, theoretically - you could finish 30 games in 30 days. We know that is not necessarily feasible for most people but publishers will assume it is their games you are finishing. Think of the cost in those terms.

Consoldtobots1114d ago

to me it sounds like Sony doesn't truly understand the power of this platform. You are providing publishers with a vehicle to deliver content on a level unprecedented. You(Sony) can dictate prices and publishers will have to comply if they want access to the massive PSN userbase.

dumb dumb dumb

incredibleMULK1114d ago

I don't know, Sony is used to failure. I had high hopes for psnow, now its blowing up in their face like a trick cigar.

I guess its cosmic retribution for firing a bunch of loyal PS managers like Jack Denton and shutting down zipper.

morganfell1114d ago


No. Just no. Publishers are accessing a vast majority of those consumers anyway. What you want is for them to slash their profits to rech more people. Now that would be dumb. News flash. Games cost money. Story at 11.

spacedelete1114d ago

i still don't see any point in PlayStation Now. why pay to rent games when all of the best last gen games are getting remastered anyway ? even Sony is doing it with The Last Of Us which could have been a big reason for people to pay up. with a remastered game you get the best image, framerate and its on disc so you actually own it unlike streaming which is just throwing money away.

even if theres a subscription it will still fail as all the best PS3 games are getting remastered. if i was Sony i would cancel PlayStation Now ASAP as its going to lose them a tonne of money.running servers isn't cheap.

fr0sty1114d ago

Sony have already made it very clear they are very interested in a subscription service for Now. As for the paid beta, part of working out the bugs is also working out the bugs in pricing, doing market analysis and seeing who is willing to pay for what, and then setting your prices when the service matures out of beta. this isn't just a test on the tech, but a test on the market for the tech.

donthate1113d ago (Edited 1113d ago )

The fact that Sony has now released it as an open beta essentially means the prices are there to stay. Beta is just a term these day to raise a shield and say "we are not responsible for problems"!

Depending on uptake and amount, publishers might not care if PS Now succeeds or not so they aren't likely willing to subsidize Sony's success.

BLuTheSecond1113d ago

Like I said before: Sony should just add this to PSN Plus instead of making it a separate service and then increase the price of PSN Plus to $60 a year to compensate for the added value.

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truefan11114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )

This is going to hurt Sony greatly, I'm guessing the prices being high has something to do with paying the publishers and the $380 million cost of Gaikai. Sony is going to have to cut the price of psnow significantly if they want to give it any chance of success. To be honest, psnow seems destined to fail because of price and streaming lag. They should have just done backwards compatibility, they're fans would have been satisfied.

PS the only way a subscription would work is if psnow is only for games owned by sony, otherwise they would be losing money after having to pay publishers for their games.

XiNarutoUzumaki1114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )

''To be honest, psnow seems destined to fail because of price and streaming lag. ''

And here you are once again talking shiet without any proof. I tried it yesterday with Twisted Metal, and I didn't have any lag. 12 mpbs is my Internet. Yours must suck.

Also. It is so early to say it is destined to fail, unless you want it to fail. can't expect less from someone like you. With all these negative feedback toward this, Sony might change to a subscription plan. Le't hope they listen and fix it.

''They should have just done backwards compatibility, they're fans would have been satisfied. ''

Yes, but PS4 has no Cell Processor. Let it go and Move on. What about your dear Microsoft? Did they add BC too? No? STFU then.

johndoe112111114d ago

So I guess the only way netflix should have worked was if they only showed movies developed by netfix because they should be loosing money having to pay all those studios for all those different movies.

Your wisdom continues to astound me.

EData1114d ago (Edited 1114d ago )

lol lag, like you would know. Most articles I read on it stated little to NO lag. But I am sure you would just love it to fail judging by your comment history. yikes.

I think the pricing and content are the only two things that will dictate whether or not it succeeds. And the content is growing drastically. I feel prices will be worked out, they already mentioned a subscription model many times in the past and once a few days ago. They just need to understand their current price model is pretty bad.

MysticStrummer1114d ago

Here's what I see before "To be honest…", which is where I stopped reading because… well… it's you. :

Speculation + guesswork + opinion

gangsta_red1114d ago

Funny how everyone rips cloud compute without trying it but no one can say the same for PSNow...even tho few have tried it. I tried OnLive and there was lag. Does this mean PSNow could be the same? Especially for multiplayer games?

kenshiro1001114d ago

You never have anything constructive to say, do you?

You're the worst kind of fanboy on a gaming site.

averagejoe261114d ago


Actually... No... The prices are that way because the publishers set the price... NOT Sony... Research before you speak on that which you know nothing of

Eonjay1114d ago

You oponion is fine but know that it doesn't lag. Ir really doesn't. Even when playing fast paced action games.

The reason why it may succeed is because it actually works. A library of games, like Netflix Library of movies, that start instantly.

S2Killinit1114d ago

Im playing a game right now (Oddworld: Stranger's Wrath) no lag here bro

AndrewLB1114d ago

XiNarutoUzumaki- My brother has Time Warner Cable 200 megabit internet and he tells me that he is only able to download like 1.5Mb/sec. 200 megabit gets you an effective download speed of 27-28Mb/sec and his PS4 is wired using gigabit ethernet. So it's clearly not on his end. It reminds me of the great download speeds that I get with my PS Vita except in my case, I believe it's the Vita's wifi that just sucks.

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nerdman671114d ago

As of right now I dont think they can, it would be too expensive for them.
The companies who made the games would probably want some kind of compensation from sony, which would add up and lead to a rather expensive subscription fee.

RzaDaRazor1114d ago

Let's say I pay for a 4-hour rental, then my internet goes out or I have something I must go take care of and can't get back to my house in four hours. I'm screwed. This is the worst business model that I've seen in a while. They absolutely cannot expect people to sit and play the game for four hours straight or one day straight. Completely stupid.

dragon821114d ago

What happens if you rented a game from Redbox for a day and had something come up? Redbox absolutely cannot expect people to sit and play a game for one day straight. Completely stupid.

See how stupid that sounds?