Netflix for games: Sony PlayStation Now update to add PS4 game streaming
Despite some serious promise, Sony’s cloud-based gaming service PlayStation Now never really got people excited. But Sony has just announced a brand-new update, and it could make PlayStation Now a whole new reason for buying a PS4 or PS4 Pro.
PlayStation Now has always been the best way to play some 483 classic games from PlayStation 3 on your PS4 or Windows PC. But in a statement released yesterday, Sony said it will now be adding PS4 titles to the cloud-based service.
A blog post by PlayStation Now’s senior marketing manager, Brian Dunn, says Sony will begin testing the new functionality over the next few weeks: “In the next few weeks, we’ll kick off a private test with PS4 games on PS Now,” writes Dunn. “If you’re an active PS Now subscriber, keep an eye on your email in case you get an invitation.”
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What’s more, the blog post says that users won’t need to pay different rates on their PS Now subscription, depending on the games they want to play. The blog post instead says: “All of the games in the service, including PS4 games, will be included with a single PS Now subscription,” which is a nice move by Sony.
You won’t have to worry about saving, either. Because PS Now uses cloud saves, you’ll be able to play games on a PC or PS4, and then switch over to another PC or PS4, provided you’re signed in to your account – a lot like Netflix.
Netflix for games
Although this might seem like a subtle change, it actually changes the PS Now service completely. Rather than just a niche service to play through old classics, PS Now’s inclusion of contemporary games makes it something more akin to Netflix, Amazon Prime Video or Xbox’s Game Pass.
For one flat monthly fee, users will be able to play anything they want, without the hassle of discs or the fear of buying a game they won’t want. And that might be very attractive to more serious gamers.
However, it’s possible PS Now will have the same caveats as Netflix. First, using a cloud-based service puts you at the mercy of your internet provider, so it’s very possible gamers will experience lag or even connection dropouts.
Second, it’s possible that with 4K now on the horizon, Sony could charge gamers more for Ultra HD game streaming – and that’s in the unlikely event it’s able to offer 4K streaming at all. If it isn’t, those with a PS4 Pro probably won’t be signing up anytime soon.