PlayStation Now will offer a number of PS1, PS2 and PS3 titles through a rental service, either on a title by title basis or under a subscription model. As yet, Sony has not provided a price for individual rentals or subscriptions, or divulged exactly how long a rental lasts. Also missing from the conference was an explanation of how, if at all, the service will fit into the existing PS+ platform, or their newly announced cloud-based TV service. Here is a list of PS Now’s features, from the PlayStation Blog:
Leveraging Gaikai’s advanced cloud-based technology, PlayStation Now will allow you to:
- Play video games instantly across multiple devices, similar to the way you might stream TV, movies, and music.
- Stream full games to all of your compatible PlayStation devices including PS4, PS3, and PlayStation Vita as well as non-PlayStation devices, beginning with 2014 BRAVIA TV models and expanding to numerous other Internet-connected devices.
- Always play the most updated version of your game. With games hosted in the cloud, you can take your game with you – just log in with your Sony Entertainment Network account on a compatible device and your games and saved progress will be easily available.
One of the most interesting aspects of PlayStation Now is the number of ways to access the service – in addition to being accessible on PS4, PS3 and PS Vita, users will be able to play on mobile devices, select Sony televisions and tablets. It’ll also allow cross-saving between devices and trophies, messaging and online multiplayer will allow be integrated into the interface.
Sony had claimed back in Fall 2013 that their implementation of Gaikai’s technology would be available by the end of 2014, but it’s a little surprising how close PS Now is to completion; it won’t be released until this Summer (In North America), but CES attendees were able to play The Last of Us on PS4 and Vita using the service yesterday on the show floor. There will even be a U.S. closed beta as early as the end of January.
Unfortunately, House did not say anything about PlayStation Now’s release date outside the United States. There has been no official update regarding the reported broadband issues Sony was having with the PAL region back in late 2013.
PS Now is just one of the cool devices showcased at this year’s CES, which we will continue to take a look at this week.