PS4 could allow multiple subscription levels

President of Worldwide Studios says Sony could act like a cable TV company and offer gold, silver, or platinum levels of membership.

316 Comments

The PlayStation 4 could offer gamers multiple subscription levels, Sony president of Worldwide Studios Shuhei Yoshida told The Guardian. The executive said that because services and content have become available digitally, Sony is in a position to act like a traditional cable TV company and offer multiple membership tiers.

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"As more and more services and contents become available digitally, we'll have more of an option to create attractive packages. So hypothetically we can look at different models--like a cable TV company," Yoshida said.

"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," he added. "With one subscription you have access to thousands of games--that's our dream."

Yoshida's comments are purely hypothetical at the moment, as Sony has not yet detailed full plans for PS4 pricing. The only mention of firm pricing plans thus far came from SCEA CEO Jack Tretton, who said last week that PS4 titles will range from 99 cents to $60.

Digital software support will be a major component of the PS4, Yoshida said, noting Sony is taking a similar approach to that of the PlayStation Vita.

"We're shifting our platform more and more to the digital side--PS4 will be similar to PS Vita in that every game will be available as a digital download, and some will also be available as a disc," he said. "The Witness will be a digital release and because of the flexibility of the digital distribution scheme, we can have more small games that might be free or available for a couple of dollars, or different services like free-to-play or subscription models."

For more on Sony's vision for the PS4, check out Yoshida's thoughts on used games, The Last Guardian, and support for legacy platforms .

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experience_fade

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Did anyone notice how this article never got 10k comments?

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milomell

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Edited By milomell

gamespot is a bunch of sony haters don't believe this shit this websight is known to spread falls rumors when it comes to sony

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junglist101

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Can you PLEASE stop trying to think of new ways to charge us up the ass for stuff?!

This makes me want to punch Sony in the face. I have plenty of money for this crap but dammit I am so tired of them depriving me of functions on my ps3/4 unless I pay up. Does anyone else realize that this is not how things were in the early days of the ps3? They would come up with new stuff and it was part of the purchase price, or in other words---free. I log onto the psn store these days and there is so much crap on there that costs money I don't even know where to begin. And all of it is costing more and more...

What do they expect me to do budget 10,000 dollars a year just to get my games and ps3/4 fully functional? This is bullshit and I blame all you hose bags who buys all this crap on psn.

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jecomans

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@junglist101 So they gave you a few things for free, and now you think everything should be free? Because they don't need to pay the devs or staff at all do they?

I can't think of a damn thing to do with basic functionality that I've had to pay for in the last 6 years. So, what are you talking about?

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longy07

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So r we going to be paying like Xbox?if we r I'm out and u will be better of staying with your ps3 for free

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Facelord

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Edited By Facelord

@longy07 Nah, I think it's more along the lines of them offering more value for the subscriptions. The Silver subscription could give PS+ benefits, Gold could offer PS+ and cloud gaming support and Platinum could give you PS+, cloud gaming and a selection of a ton of games to play while you're subscribed, like Onlive's Playpass service. I'd totally be a Platinum subscriber if that's how it worked out.

If they did start punishing players who don't pay the monthly fee, though, I'm out. I think I'd just start playing legacy systems if that were the case, buy up a ton of classics. I quit PC gaming a little over a year ago because of the DRM, I quit Xbox gaming when the 360 launched because of Xbox Live Gold and the increasing importance of online gaming, I quit Nintendo gaming because their hardware, game support and online infrastructure are laughably bad. It'd suck if I lost Sony, too. :<

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jecomans

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Edited By jecomans

@Facelord I think what they mean by the importance of PS+ going forward is not that it'll be necessary to use the PS4 (for those who don't which to, or can't, subscribe), but rather that it'll be integral to their marketing and feedback systems. Auto-updates, a vast number of users plugged into the network and the community allowing them to showcase their line-ups and keep customers/gamers involved and paying attention.

If you're the type of gamer who is often on forums or watching gameplay trailers and demos it sound like the perfect thing. Pay for PS+ and you can play those demos, get early content, with a range a free games to boot.

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munkeypoo45

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i like the idea but if it is mandatory then that could be a problem. it should be like PS+ just with more content. unlimited games for a subscription sounds intriguing but if implemented incorrectly, it could be devastating.

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Ravenlore_basic

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@munkeypoo45 Yes like people could not buy the PS4 with a paid subscription and go out and buy Xbox with its free subscription http://www.escapistmagazine.com/news/view/104609-Microsoft-Drops-Xbox-Live-Silver-Creates-Xbox-Live-Free


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CP2077

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Edited By CP2077

I just hope they start copying what steam is doing for online game sales Gabe Newell is stinking filthy rich so its not like they wont turn a profit for selling games cheap. I only buy games when they are on sale off steam. I pay way less the you do for a console game, most the time I don't spend over $20 on a game, some times I spend $40 if I really want something and can't wait any longer. If i don't have a big interest in a game I wait for the price to drop to $20 then go on sale for $10.

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Ravenlore_basic

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@CP2077 But that would mean No disk form and always on connection.

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warhawk-geeby

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Totally called this. I'm expecting a free PSN with cross-game chat.

Then there'll be PS+ (with its new name) allowing for video chats as an addition, and also a whole host of bonus features game-wise on the store.

Providing online is free again i'll be happy, that said however I am seriously considering a subscription for PlayStation given the amount of free games on offer for the PS3. Sleeping Dogs was a quality game!!

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Ravenlore_basic

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@warhawk-geeby NO with SO MANY people willing to pay for LIVE it will be different

PSN CORE : just be able to access PSN buy games.... Play online same as now. Hulu+ Netflex..

PSN BASIC :same as now but BETTER connection. Demos, Home, for a low $20 - $30.00 a year (still cheaper than live) cross game chat, notification...

PSN+ same as now with some extras for $10.00 more just like Live that raised the price to $60.00 a year.

PSN Premium : a lot more movies, Music, Netflix like Sony, Japanese, Korean Anime, Movies. cable channels, access to ALL Sony games from PS1 - PS3. This would also work with Vita. For more money say $80.00 - 100.00 I think that Sony will make it worth it seeing how well PSN+ has been recently.

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warhawk-geeby

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@Ravenlore_basic We'll see my friend! Only time will tell..

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jark888

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Hello everyone!, Let's check out PS4 Specifications on my blog. Just click on my profile picture. It should take you guys there ;D

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jark888

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I probably get PS4 some time if Sony's business practice continue to behave kindly in favor of gamers (Meaning Sony try their very truly best to avoid charging on online services associated to gameplay).

Free online gameplay is one of the major selling points of both PS3 console and its games over Xbox 360. Sony generates more income on those sells, while Xbox 360 generates smaller market share from Xbox Live.

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Ravenlore_basic

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@jark888 40 Million Live accounts from people willing not only to pay but accept Advertisement, and now even commercial interruption!!

I think it is just too good for Sony to Not think about. Sure PSN CORE will be a strip of PSN as it is now. BUT I DO agree that BASIC Game play will be FREE unlike LIVE, and Netflex and other paid for services will also be FREE unlike Live.

But that would be it. Other levels will cost a little more.

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FusionRain

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@jark888 Welp, I think having people pay for something they can't use is stupid so they won't have a base "pay to play" online model like the Xbox Live model.

I say that because everyone won't be able to use Geikei and you can't just force PS Plus on people. If they don't want it of have network limitations that makes Geikei not worth it then they shouldn't have to pay for it.

I predict the base model as far has store access, online play, and using apps like Netflix will totally be unchanged. I can see a fee for Geikei, like instant playback, try any game in store feature, and video uploading or more options for video uploading, like editing. Just my opinions because they shouldn't possibly alienate there fans by making us pay to play.

PS: Claymore is awesome! I'm like on Chapter 132 in the manga

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jark888

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@FusionRain @jark888 Cool! Finally, I found someone who can recognize my profile picture.

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jark888

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Edited By jark888

@FusionRain @jark888 Wow, that's sort of stunning! ;D

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FusionRain

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@jark888 Teresa of the Faint Smile to be exact.

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jark888

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"We're shifting our platform more and more to the digital side." And now I ask you to look at PS vita memory cards' prices.

It's such an obvious scam to me. Even if people get PSvita at a good discount rate, Sony still make that up from selling proprietary memory card. I basically don't believe that the card is any better than the cheaper micro SD card.

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FusionRain

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@jark888 Yeah, why wouldn't they make a proprietary memory that only goes for their system? We may not like it but it still is pretty smart. Other memstick duos took allot of thunder from the Sony ones during the PSP time.

Also Japan had a price drop for both the Vita and the memory cards. While that regional, we can hope that moves this way.

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jark888

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@FusionRain @jark888 That would really make PSvita's owners their days.

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Ravenlore_basic

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Edited By Ravenlore_basic

@jark888 @FusionRain Really for me to get a vita I want a 7" screen. Would even pay a little more for that. Just do not call it PSV xl.

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Mortz_88

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PS+ is a total rip off

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Ravenlore_basic

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@Mortz_88 ... You get Free games, the price for 1 of the free games given cost more than PSN+... SO how is that a rip off. It has been GREAT since I just got it. Compare it to LIVE and....

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leviathanwing

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Edited By leviathanwing

@Mortz_88 what would you call xbl then?

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FusionRain

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@Mortz_88 Everyone I know that uses it, including me, thinks otherwise.

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Samparksh

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Now I'm gonna go buy the Xbox 720...........I mean,seriously???That's what Sony has for us gamers???

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FusionRain

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@Samparksh I take it you along with everyone else didn't actually read this article. It's pretty much talking about services like Geikei and, unmentioned, Plus. I figure that if they pull of having people pay a certain for a month and them being able to stream the whole catalog then that would be totally worth it to me. I'm also sure that core system will be unchanged. I'm just thinking that these extra online features, that do to bandwith and other limitations, everyone won't be ale to use fluently anyways I wouldn't be surprised if they had some type of price on them. Coast lots of money to keep that up but making people pay for something they aren't using is stupid, not the other way around.

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SiLenTWarrior29

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Edited By SiLenTWarrior29

I can see the good old days of gaming.. starting to fade away.

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FusionRain

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Edited By FusionRain

@SiLenTWarrior29 The good ol' days before online gaming It's still there it's call the "sign out" button.

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jark888

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@FusionRain @SiLenTWarrior29 Lol.

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Slyster1181

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Just give me the ability to play my games online for free and the OPTION of picking up a sub service to use the Gaikai and the social aspects the PS4 will offer and I will be fine.. I really hope I do not have to pay a sub to play online.. That was the main reason I bought a PS3 over a 360..

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Centurion-Legio

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Edited By Centurion-Legio

@Slyster1181 that is exactly how it's going to be, trust me. They aren't stupid over at Sony, they wouldn't lose people over something like that. The only thing i am hoping for is that we don't have to pay for the cross-game chat feature.

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leviathanwing

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@Slyster1181 after 2 generations of free online from psn i highly doubt sony is going to make us pay to use the full content we already paid for.

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fuff115

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@Slyster1181 There won't be any Free Online Next-Gen. Sony is not fool.

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blackace

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Get ready for XBox Live type services on the PS4. I told you cows this several years back, but no one believed me. They are going to combine PSPlus with all those online services and feature and charge different levels of fees to use them. Sony wants to be profitable again and then are envious of Microsoft and their XBL service which makes millions every year to help keep them out of the red. I knew this would happen eventually. I'm just wondering how much Sony is going to make everyone pay?

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leviathanwing

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@blackace there is no such thing as 'xbl services' unless you call using my game to its fullest by paying for something i already paid for as a 'service'. ps plus already does everything as far as xbl goes so this is probably more of a streaming game/movie, cloud storage, back catalogue. so it does everything xbl forces you to pay for for free plus actually give actual services for the money that you paid.

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Meta-Gnostic

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@blackace I said the same thing back in 2006 i.e. that you would have to pay to play online on PS4 and Wii U. However, it's looking more and more like PS4's fees may be for stuff other than actual online play.

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MAG--256

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@blackace

unlike MS to play online would still be free

to download demos and videos it will be free


so they can charge $60-70 for psn:plus and add more tv shows and other entertainment. i don't see them charging people to play online. also cross game chat will be free since its free on vita

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Unfallen_Satan

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Edited By Unfallen_Satan

I don't get it. Why would a console that I buy have subscription levels? How does that even work for a physical device? PSN is already a tiered service, and I expect that to expand, so three or four tiers instead of two is unsurprising. If, on the other hand, a future PS console like PS4 incorporates mandatory net connection, becoming effectively nothing more than a client device for Sony's online services, then it will be a great time for many of us to retire from console gaming.

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FusionRain

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@Unfallen_Satan I think playing online and store access will always remain free, but Geikei and of course PS Plus services will no doubt need some payment otherwise people who can't use it would be paying for it inside a normal base fee which I think Sony knows better than doing that.

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kennythomas26

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I remeber hearing about this some time before their anouncement and up until now it was just a rumor.

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bouff

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I hope that if they do a system of subscriptions then it be like the PS+, the higher the subscription the more (time)exclusives will be available

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jsmoke03

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silver is free online mp tks...