Sony announces streaming media service ‘PlayStation Vue’ (Wired UK)


PlayStation
Vue
PlayStation
Vue

Sony’s new streaming service wants to replace your
cable subscription

© Sony Computer Entertainment


PlayStation
Now
won’t be Sony’s only foray into streaming media — the
gaming giant will be taking on the likes of Netflix with the
announcement of PlayStation Vue. First mentioned in the conceptual
stages at this year’s CES, the final release aims to expand Sony’s
plans to turn the PlayStation console family into entertainment
hubs rather than being seen as purely gaming machines.

However, the new service has some big differences compared to
its rivals. Rather than just streaming a set array of content, it
will offer live TV without a separate cable or satellite
subscription, and allow viewers to store favourite shows to the
cloud without any restrictions on storage. Essentially merging
broadcast, catch-up (think iPlayer) and on-demand functions, Vue
will offer the past three days of programming without needing to
schedule recording, while episodes of favourited shows will be
available for up to 28 days.

An invite-only beta will run in the US this month, for PS4 and
PS3 owners. There are plans to release a version of the software
for iPad and other mobile devices after launch, currently set for
first quarter 2015. Pricing has yet to be finalised, but Sony claim
“PS Vue is changing the rules for how people pay for subscription
TV” and that “what you see is what you pay — fair and competitive
price that is transparent with no hidden fees or charges.” Like
Netflix, there will be no contract, with a rolling monthly bill and
no penalties for cancellation.

It will also congregate content for viewers, recommending movies
and TV based on viewing habits and trending content, while the
“Explore” function will allow viewers to filter the entire Vue
catalogue by program type, genre, popularity, length and several
other metrics. Sony is looking to partner with traditional networks
to provide content for the service.

“Everyday TV is about to become extraordinary with our new
cloud-based TV service, PS Vue,” Andrew House, Sony Computer
Entertainment’s President and Group CEO, said via statement. “[It]
reinvents the traditional viewing experience so your programming
effortlessly finds you, enabling you to watch much more of what you
want and search a lot less. Today’s announcement builds on the
historic success of PlayStation 4 and demonstrates what our company
is capable of when we embrace disruption and stay true to
gamers.”

WIRED.co.uk contacted Sony’s UK office for comment on a domestic
launch of the service, but there are no details at present. A local
version seems fairly inevitable though, and Sony’s announcement
that “PS Vue will initially offer around 75 channels per market”
indicates plans are already afoot for international rollout. A
change in name for the UK could be prove necessary though, to avoid
clashing with the Vue Cinemas chain.

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14 November 2014 | 5:50 pm – Source: wired.co.uk

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