During the PS4 event last Wednesday there was plenty of exciting new games and features announced by Sony. However, for as many answers as the event delivered, there were just as many, if not more, questions raised regarding the next-gen consoles new features.
Among those features is Sony’s subscription service – the next evolution of PlayStation Plus. While most assume that PS Plus will appear very much in the same iteration it is available now, that might not be the case.
According to Shuhei Yoshida, the PS4‘s version of PS Plus could come in a tiered form, not unlike what Microsoft offers with its Xbox Live service. Yoshida wouldn’t give concrete details, as it’s likely that Sony is mulling over how best to implement the service, but he did mention “gold, silver, and platinum levels” of membership.
“We could have gold, silver or platinum levels of membership, something like that. We can do subscription services when we have more content – especially now that we have the Gaikai technology available. With one subscription you have access to thousands of games – that’s our dream.”
That tiered structure implies platinum level subscribers will have access to a full suite of downloadable titles, discounts, and expanded features, however at a higher yearly (or monthly) cost. Silver level, though, could be a very basic subscription package, which we’d expect to resemble what the PSN is now.
With much more content available on the PS4 – especially considering that PS3 games will be streamed using the Gaikai service – there is the potential for more content than has ever been featured on a Sony console before. The possibilities are endless, with the platinum and gold levels potentially affording gamers more free games than what is currently available with the Instant Game Collection. To be fair, those games might be from a previous generation, but the hope is that Sony has learned from past experiences with online subscription services, and will make their paid subscriptions appealing to gamers.
Moreover, a tired subscription service gives Sony the opportunity to slowly switch to a digital distribution platform, a transition they hope to achieve in the next 5 years or so. It might be a bit early to expect an announcement from Sony regarding the future of their online service, but E3 2013 is coming up fast and the publisher has promised more reveals for that very important event.
What do you think about Sony using a tiered subscription plan for their online service? How would you like to see them divvy features among the three levels?
Sony’s PS4 is targeting a holiday 2013 release date.
Source: The Guardian