How I’d Pay for the Playstation Network

By  |  Monday, December 14, 2009 at 4:24 pm

Sony’s been grumbling a bit lately about how it’d like to charge monthly fees for the Playstation Network, not for the online gaming and video downloads that Playstation 3 and PSP owners already enjoy, but for additional services.

The first mention came a few weeks ago in a Sony investors’ conference slide, and re-emerged in a Nikkei interview with Sony’s Masayuki Chatani. The company has avoided specifics, which makes me think Sony is still toying with ideas. Seems like a good opportunity to toss out a few ideas of my own. Here are some ways I could be persuaded to pay for PSN:

Help me replace cable: Instead of forking over $200 for a Boxee Box, I’d consider a monthly payment — say $20 — to Sony, especially if the service went above and beyond existing free Web TV offerings. Throw in live sports, and the deal is sealed. Licensing TV content is a sticky mess, so I’m calling this one unlikely in the near future.

Give me game rentals: I’m somewhat happy paying $25 per month for GameFly, but I’d be happier if Sony let me skip GameFly’s occasionally unbearable wait times by offering full game rentals for download. Because the service would only include Sony consoles, pricing would have to be less than GameFly, or more creative. Maybe a certain dollar figure for a limited number of play hours every month. I’d say this is unlikely, but Sony reportedly¬†surveyed PSP owners about a game rental program in May, so it’s not absurd.

Stream me some indie games: The Playstation Network is home to some great small-scale games, such as Flower, Noby Noby Boy and the PixelJunk series. I’d think Sony has more control over these titles than big-budget releases, so why not let PSN subscribers play an unlimited amount of them every month?

All of This, Plus: If Sony could roll my entire wishlist into one attractive package, I could be persuaded to pay as much as $60 a month for it all (after all, I’d be relying on the service for television and a lot of gaming), but I’d like some perks in return. Maybe a monthly discount on a particular retail game, or a free movie download. Incentives go a long way towards keeping the customer roped in; GameFly’s discounts on used games are one of the reasons I’ve never canceled my subscription.

Am I asking for too much?

 
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4 Comments For This Post

  1. GlossGreen Says:

    Sony would have to offer something substantial to prospective subscribers in order to justify charging for their service. Some of what you suggest seems possible, but my guess is that Sony will come out with something that no one has guessed at yet. I’m interested to know what they have planned.

  2. ReynaldoRiv Says:

    Lifted from my Kotaku post on the subject
    —————————————————–
    You can charge Sony. But only if it’s a premium service.

    Everything that the PS3 does now, I expect for free. And you still have to get that cross game chat and custom music in every game. Once those two are implemented on the current PSN (for free of course) you have the Xbox 100% in the corner in terms of services offered.

    After that this is what a premium service will look like:
    -Some free movies or TV shows
    -Slight discount on ALL PSN purchases (even if there is a sale).
    -Daily raffles for prizes
    -Something else awesome that I can’t think of right now.
    Add to the list people!
    —————————————–

    I like your Boxee mention. They could also offer Boxee as a for pay App Download, but include it free with some skins for subscribers to the premium service.

    $60 a month is a bit too rich for my blood. Maybe $60 a year, but even then, I’d like the price of $50 a year much more, and $40 a year puts it into the impulse buy zone that people can very easily buy into.

  3. james braselton Says:

    HI THERE I USE A PSN CARD OR PLAYSTAION NETWORK CARD LIKE A ITUNES CARD SOO I HOPE THEY WILL LET CONSUMERS STAY WITH THE PSN CARD AND NOT GO WITH MONTHLY FEES GO THEN I WOULD BE GOING PICK GAME CARDS WITHOUT BUYING GAMES FOR MY PSP GO I WICH THEY STAY WITH APPLE $50 PSN CARD GETS YOU $50 GAMES

  4. Regine Risser Says:

    Hi, This the first time I come here, I like your post and you have a new one follower!

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