PlayStation Network Platform detailed

How does Sony plan to take on Xbox Live? SCE president Ken Kutaragi gives the 2006 PlayStation Business Briefing a glimpse; online SDKs due by end of month.

TOKYO--While the PlayStation 2 has been the top-selling current-generation console in the gaming market, it never had a powerful online gaming service like Microsoft's Xbox Live. That will change later this year, when Sony Computer Entertainment debuts a long-rumored online service simultaneously with the console's worldwide launch in early November.

Today at the 2006 PlayStation Business Briefing in Tokyo, SCE president Ken Kutaragi unveiled the new network service, tentatively titled the PlayStation Network Platform. The service is currently being codeveloped with Sony Online Entertainment. SOE currently runs the Station.com online gaming site, which provides the infrastructure for a series of PC massively multiplayer online role-playing games, such as EverQuest II, Star Wars Galaxies, and PlanetSide. It also provides the infrastructure for online play of the PS2 games Champions of Norrath and its sequel, as well as PSP games such as Untold Legends: The Warriors Code and the forthcoming Field Commander.

Basic services for the PSNP will initially be free, like Xbox Live Silver. However, unlike Microsoft's entry-level online service, which doesn't allow gameplay, the basic level of PSNP will provide gamers with the necessary services and functions required for online gaming, according to Kutaragi.

Also unlike Xbox Live, the PlayStation Network Platform will allow licensees to connect their own game servers to the network. SCE will provide a common infrastructure for the service, but the PSNP will use the standard Internet. Unlike with Xbox Live, licensees will be able to connect their own game servers to the PSNP.

PlayStation Network Platform will feature the standard set of communication and gameplay functionalities, including video chat, messaging, matchmaking, ranking, and game data upload and download. PS3 owners will also be able to purchase content via an Xbox Live Marketplace-like download service.

Despite rumors that Sony will make its back catalog of PlayStation and PlayStation 2 games available for download, Kutaragi did not specifically say whether games would be offered as a part of the PSNP's online commerce functions. However, given the success of retro games on Xbox Live Arcade, such a move is likely, as indicated by the announced ability to boot games from the PS3 HDD.

Interestingly, part of the PSNP's commerce functionality is called "selling item by item." Since SOE runs an online auction house that lets players of its massively multiplayer online role-playing games sell in-game items for cash, this raises the possiblity that gamers could sell game items to each other over the PSNP. Sony had not confirmed said functionality as of press time.

The full list of planned services for the PlayStation Network Platform is as follows:

Communication/Community:
Account created through user registration
Lobbies/Matchmaking
Scores/Ranking
Game data upload/download
Presence/Friend List/Avatar
Voice/Video Chat
Messaging

Commerce
Shops (can be accessed from inside games)
Content Download
Game boot from HDD
Subscription
Selling item by item
Micropayment
Entitlement Management

Account
User Registration
Login ID/Handlename issue

SCE will be providing system developer kits to publishers that plan on developing games that use the PlayStation Network Platform. The kits will be distributed at the end of this month.

SDK Delivery Schedule
March: Dev. server/client SDK 1st release
April: Dev. server/client SDK 2nd release
June: Full functions completed on dev. server
July: Full function test starts for licensees
September: Production environment available

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Discussion

365 comments
ybarraq1
ybarraq1

to all gamers I Love my ps1and ps2 my son loves his ps2 and box 360 we just have fun gaming and it is good for us because sony and xbox have to keep us happy or we will find a new way to play our games. can we all try to get along ps2 grillman out

umbaquaw
umbaquaw

**** these unoriginal bastards, they just gotta steal everything don't they? Sony, you are of the lowest quality, think of something original for once instead of stealing others ideas. Hope everyones PS3 sets flames.

Metahero
Metahero

"Everyone seems so thrilled that gaming online with the PS3 is free, making it better than XBL. However, for the price of a PS3 you can get an X360 and 4 years of XBL Gold." (Originally posted by kooch664) Don't you think that's an unfair comparison? A more thorough analysis would say that for an extra 200 bucks, you can get Blu-Ray, a bigger hard drive, free online, and HDMI. That seems like reasonable value for the extra 200 bucks.

Dog_Dancing1
Dog_Dancing1

Well we will see if the hold true to the "free" idea. I hope in the downloads you can download mini games, new maps, ect. and maybe like some people have said have PS1 games for download because some ps1 games are just to great to pass up not playing every once in a while. But I wonder with the third party servers will you have to pay to play on them. ~peace~

kooch664
kooch664

Everyone seems so thrilled that gaming online with the PS3 is free, making it better than XBL. However, for the price of a PS3 you can get an X360 and 4 years of XBL Gold.

trigun123
trigun123

Haha take that microsoft, making people play for online games is rediculous. Why would i pay $50 (not that its alot, but if i dont have to spend it then why) to play your crappy halo games when i can play shooters that are on par or better than them for free on the computer. when sony said its new console is going to be like a computer they ment it, free online is a great idea. And it isnt like microsoft saying free xbox live silver and not being able to actually play games you can play games for free online right out of the box. And the way that it sounds, their interface is going to be as good if not better than Xbox live so PS3 is looking good in the online world. Though us college students may have to decide between tuition and a PS3 (my credit card is already crying lol). and as far as the monitor and web browser the PS2 was supposed to come out with, it was unneeded i mean who cant get off their ass and go to any crappy comp to browse the net? and as far as im concerned it was a move influenced because microsoft didnt launch a web browser either. and nomailx you have to be on crack, PCs are the best platform for gaming so why wouldnt you emulate them, i mean god forbid someone other than microsoft and apple offer basic services like web browsing...I dare you to find me a PC that can play PS3 quality games and have all the bells and whistles the PS3 has for $600. stop **** and enjoy the value!

Worsley_ngw
Worsley_ngw

They have learned from there blunder

Gleba2388
Gleba2388

free online playing? Whohoo, count me in!

Lnrd156
Lnrd156

Hahahahahahahaha thank the lord But I want to know more about the other service that isn't free.

DaClint91
DaClint91

Hopefully Sony keeps its promises. If some of this stuff never comes out, I would not be surprised. Remember the PS2 Web Browser and Monitor? At least when Microsoft says there are doing something, they do it.

Distvrbed
Distvrbed

I thought they said that we could connect to the internet sort of like the PSP?

datret
datret

Neato! Free online again!

boxspartan
boxspartan

If other individual companies can hardwire their game servers to the PSNP doesn't that mean that there is no gardian angle, Like in XLive, protecting the PS3 from viruses and other computer related troubles. I don't like that Sony's taking the consol industry in the direction of computers. Consoles are known for BUG FREE play.

squints7
squints7

VIDEO CHAT .... thats sweeeett... ... maybe find some hot chicks on there n see them do. yeah....... lol

BloodAdo
BloodAdo

ALL I HEAR IS OMG SONY IS COPYING XBL. Didn't Xbox copy the PS2, by being a console itsself and why is the Xbox copieng Atari for having a controller huH? why is the xbox copying the PS2 by having DVD playback (which you have to pay for on the Xbox) and why is the xbox copying th PS2 by using DVD-Roms? why is the xbox copying the PS2 by having a headset? Answer those questions then talk about Sony copying MS. X-bots are seriously stupid and yes PNP will be better then XBL

nomailx
nomailx

Hmmmm, Can someone just tell me why "Consoles" are trying to emulate "Home PCs"? Microsoft is trying to get the competition in "his" Field, (internet, Hard drive, Multimadia functions) and Sony is buying it. Sony is much more experienced than Microsoft in the "gaming console" field. So what Sony should have done? Well, as Nintendo is doing right now, instead of evolving through microsoft's field, they are developping the "Gaming experience" it self by adding different playing styles, (dancing, beatting drums for pads, etc). Why sony doesnt come up with an idea like "3D gaming exp" style evolution? or "Move like" gaming technology? for examples... Well, for my part, I know that the ps3 will be a nice experience, but I do not think that better graphics, a faster chip, adding hard drive, and providing an online service is an innovation? I really thought that Sony would have put more innovations in its new console, than just presenting a playstation 3 with the feel that we just upgraded our PC. NomailX

leafs_fan1
leafs_fan1

what kind of LAN connectivity can i get on this beast? will the wireless controllers cause a problem if there are, say, 4 ps3s in the same room?

simmers56
simmers56

If the online is like wat they say. that **** is gonna be hot

00Rambol00
00Rambol00

This should be a cool thing for sony, no offence xbox fans, but i jus don't like the idea of paying monthly just to play online with others....

IAmDeBest
IAmDeBest

What's with all the XBox fanboys commenting on this article? I don't know if this has been addressed, but someone said that the HDD for PS3 definitely won't come with it, but I could've sworn I saw an article that said all PS3s will come with the HDD. Anyway, I think it's a great idea to try to provide this as a free service.

Jshaw71
Jshaw71

if the ps3 has a price simmialr to the premiunm 360 it should include the HDD i heard that the HDD will be 60 gig which sounds great to me, i think the ps3 is going to be my first choice, that is if it comes with the HDD, if not then 360 i think hard drives is a major selling point for a system, and hopefully when sonys HDD comes out it can be saved and loaded from like the xboxs hard drive, i guess we all have to wait and see if sonys HDD will be utilizied correctly, but it seems as if it will be

sryuuza
sryuuza

"all i have to say is, "Remember the 'Emotion Engine'?"" Yes I do, it is inside the PS2 and enabled the ability for the games we see today. If you are going to rip into features that never came true, then look no further then this article... From X-Box to Xbox

jop360
jop360

......lol Sony Sony Sony..1 get original. 2 STOP sweeting US MICROSOFT people. 3 make promises you can keep. 4 PNP.wtf...im not biased (im a ps1 fan) besides i love the 360..but sadly i think that the revolution is going kick both their @sses.-and i don't even like them much-

Robnoxious
Robnoxious

You people are hilarious. This story is nothing more than quotes from a business brief. Nothing from Camp Sony Online has been implemented yet and the comments are going off the hook to declare a victor. Please keep it up so I can laugh some more at your lunacy . Sony set up a benchmark for their online division with PS3 and it's no surprise that it's looking a lot like Xbox Live. Great, let's see what happens when the service is actually launched. Before that occurs none of you can play the compare and contrast game. One product exists in the field and the other are just words from Kutaragi mouth. Nothing more and nothing less. Thankfully, online has never been the make or break with my gaming habits. 75% of the people commenting their biased garbage on this story alone are the people I would hate to share a game experience with anyway. Unfortunately, they make up 95% of everyone playing online today. I'll take private servers any day of the week over the public servers that wallow in this same ridiculous mindset. If Sony unlocks old titles as downloadable content I'll be all over that. There are many PSone games that even Gamespot agrees are all time classics that are next to impossible to find or come with a hefty eBay pricetag. That is the kind of value I'd like to see with Playstation Network. I would reward Sony with my dollars if such a system were added. But before all of that though, the service would have to actually exist beyond words on paper.

kenshiru
kenshiru

Xbox peeps are still unsettled coz they still cant come to terms that even tho xbox has all these live **** , Sony is still ahead in the Game industry....

prods3
prods3

1 point for Sony for originality. All they did was copy xbox live coz they cant think up anything new and possibly better. Noobs

AL13NK1LL3R
AL13NK1LL3R

sony is copy xbox live so they can be good as xbox 360, they saw the xbox live and they already knew they going to lose the online gaming. ps3 is a copy cat they copy every thing that xbox, xbox 360 has.

saturos
saturos

you guys are farking stupid saying SOny is doing every thing xbobx did. well what system came out first PS2 or Xbox? xbobx looked at ps2 when it was finished and then tried to c how they can make their system better " with their little downloadable shiot with cds and all.

anamnawshad
anamnawshad

Tomtomtom1990 said "Sony: We copied everything that XBL did (except having a unified server system, because that would cost money and stuff, and instead people are forced to use crappy, unreliable company servers), and re-named it PNP! You know, like PSP! Or P2P! Or P-I-M-P! WE ARE HIP AND COOL" That says everything!

kenshiru
kenshiru

so why did xbox but their "white" and "black" buttons at the back? like playstations L2 and R2? copying??? no one seems to see tat or watever its called?? over to u xbox....

cemose
cemose

To all the people who wont get off this copying XBL thing, ummm duh. What the hell else are they supposed to do? your saying they should find another way to play games online? guess what this is? They see the sucsses that MS had with live and now they want to offer people who are going to buy a ps3 those features and more, its called competition. and im not saying that this will be better than live(i dont wanna upset any lil fanboys)because this is all on paper for right now, but i for one will be happy to have as great online experiences on the PS3 i plan on buying as the online experiences i have with my 360. im glad that the systems are getting to a point where they wont be able to get any better and what its gonna come down to is the games, nintendo i think was the first to realize this and if enough gamers see it too then the big N will be very sucsessesful.

Just_Desert
Just_Desert

All this "Sony copied Xbox live, shame on them" talk is silly. Microsoft has done the same thing with windows OS in the past. Copying something is the finest form of flattery.

Lord_Sun_Ce
Lord_Sun_Ce

Yeah.....but what's the latest on Halo 3? If Mosrosoft tries to rush Halo 3 to bring it out at the launch of the PS3, then it could be a big letdown, ruining a massive pro for buying a 360.

Xenocide8998
Xenocide8998

To me, a new online network is just another part of the grocery list Sony has created. If the new network is suppose to be a counter action to Microsoft's X Box Live as said, it will surely come with a price. It would be to costly for Sony to run servers for a new and improved gaming network. As a gamer, I like the idea of improving online play, but with rumors spreading that Sony will feature extras, like online video chat, it occurs to me the question, what happened to the fun in online play? Another problem the Sony industry will face no matter what, is the creation of Halo 3. This one game has the power to put Microsoft laughing at Sony with its online monopoly. With all these factors, Sony must not only worry about price, but popularity and a fun/competitive online experience. For Sony's sake, I hope their new network becomes a success.

tkdb17
tkdb17

ok i've spent some time reading all the comments and i find most of you are fanboys whether it be Sony or MS. me i'm a console fan, people say ps/ps2 always breaks? not mine, i've only ever had 1 ps and 1 ps2 with no problems from either. never been an online console gamer myself, have a pc for that. as for xbox great console only its to big for my liking. now the 360, i don't have one but i wont say it don't rock because it does, my best mate has one and i've played it with him and yes it rocks, only reason i haven't got one is money, my bills come first. but can't you all hold your trash talking about the ps3 until it's been released and we all know how well it actually works for real, both power and online. because you can all say what you like but it don't mean s*@t until it's actually out and people are - hating / loving - playing it.

gamespotr0cks
gamespotr0cks

I think Ken Kutaragi woke up one day and thought... "$**T, we can't let Nintendo bring out all their retro games. They'll slaughter us!!" So what did $ony do (like they always do...........) They COPIED the competition! Now all those "retro classic" PS1 games will be playable on PS3. And soon for the PlayStation Portable. Stold a page from Nintendo $ony, let's see if the plan works.

FruitCakesRUS
FruitCakesRUS

This is quite funny. All you fanboys fighting THEY COPIED MICROSOFT!!! Like a select few of these people have said its almost a compliment to XBL service because it shows that Sony realizes XBL has been a great success. And it's not like there's many more features you could have on an online service so why not include them all? I have a 360 because I like the games and XBL. PS3 just doesn't have as many games as I like (and I couldn't afford it haha) so an online service that's even remotely close to being as good as XBL is sweet.

roonagraphics
roonagraphics

big woop its all a bucnh of sharkbiting and adding in a few ideas that will debug the whole console yea guys lets expects major load times when on servers and this that and the third

Solidesnake2004
Solidesnake2004

The full list of planned services for the PlayStation Network Platform is as follows: Communication/Community: Account created through user registration Lobbies/Matchmaking Scores/Ranking Game data upload/download Presence/Friend List/Avatar Voice/Video Chat Messaging Commerce Shops (can be accessed from inside games) Content Download Game boot from HDD Subscription Selling item by item Micropayment Entitlement Management Account User Registration Login ID/Handlename issue SCE will be providing system developer kits to publishers that plan on developing games that use the PlayStation Network Platform. The kits will be distributed at the end of this month. SDK Delivery Schedule March: Dev. server/client SDK 1st release April: Dev. server/client SDK 2nd release June: Full functions completed on dev. server July: Full function test starts for licensees September: Production environment available My Response: SDK's here....SDK's there....Wow.....i wonder what will happen when the plans for PS4 Rolls around?

Solidesnake2004
Solidesnake2004

Despite rumors that Sony will make its back catalog of PlayStation and PlayStation 2 games available for download, Kutaragi did not specifically say whether games would be offered as a part of the PSNP's online commerce functions. However, given the success of retro games on Xbox Live Arcade, such a move is likely, as indicated by the announced ability to boot games from the PS3 HDD. My Response: hmmmm Retro?? sounds like bringing back the old times eh? Interestingly, part of the PSNP's commerce functionality is called "selling item by item." Since SOE runs an online auction house that lets players of its massively multiplayer online role-playing games sell in-game items for cash, this raises the possiblity that gamers could sell game items to each other over the PSNP. Sony had not confirmed said functionality as of press time. My Response: Turning gamers into future potiential Business men/women....lol

Solidesnake2004
Solidesnake2004

Also unlike Xbox Live, the PlayStation Network Platform will allow licensees to connect their own game servers to the network. SCE will provide a common infrastructure for the service, but the PSNP will use the standard Internet. Unlike with Xbox Live, licensees will be able to connect their own game servers to the PSNP. My Response: all you need is a official licence...and all fun breaks loose PlayStation Network Platform will feature the standard set of communication and gameplay functionalities, including video chat, messaging, matchmaking, ranking, and game data upload and download. PS3 owners will also be able to purchase content via an Xbox Live Marketplace-like download service. My Response: Matchmaking????? i hope its not as what i think it is...is it?? lol...JK

17ps
17ps

hurray!!! I heard rumors that it was gonna cost 700 with the online, but i guess they threw that down the crapper. Good-bye Xbox 360...........

Drizzle
Drizzle

I have no doubt that the PS3 will be the superior system. It will all come down to execution of the plans that Sony have set. MS have the belief that they have a huge advantage over Sony because they have been first off the block. So here in lies the question: Can Sony deliver effectively?

Sandman100
Sandman100

It sound pretty damn good to me it sound like they could pass Microsoft in this area. I like the whole free part to. Even through they have stolen the whole basic principle of the online servers from Microsoft. But I like it.

timmy343
timmy343

try being innovative sony, instead of stealing other peoples ideas.