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Sony Still Considering PlayStation Network Charges

Published February 4, 2010 by |

The PlayStation Network has been free since launch but discussions at Sony may soon change this.

November 2009 saw the start of rumours that the PlayStation 3’s free online functionality may be coming to an end.

Sony PlayStation Network

Sony PlayStation Network

This came about due to a bullet point in a Sony investor conference presentation pointing towards a ‘New revenue stream from subscription’.

Fortunately the CEO and President of Sony, Kaz Hirai, quickly stepped in and told CVG that they are “studying the possibility of introducing a subscription model, offering premium content and services, in addition to the current free services”. This answered the question on most people’s lips and quelled the opposition that could of been.

Shortly after, Kotaku caught wind of a survey being sent round by IPOS Online Research, claiming to be on behalf of Sony, detailing potential prices and features of premium subscriptions to the PSN. Further information was then extracted by Engadget on what exactly these features mean by an unnamed source. It’s clear this survey might have been only carried out to test the water and capture people’s views but it gave an early indication of how Sony may add to their current services.

All was relatively quiet on this front until recently when an interview between IGN and Peter Dille, Vice President of Marketing and Head of the PSN, revealed that ‘Kaz (Hirai) recently went on the record as saying that’s something we’re looking at’ when talking about charging for the PSN service. Sadly aside from that there were no definite announcements on the subject although he strangely doesn’t reassure that current services will remain free. Maybe we are reading too much into that?

We’ve fired off an e-mail to Sony for their comments and we’ll be sure to share if we get anything back.