Sony announces PlayStation Now, its cloud gaming initative
By Sean Hollister on
January 7, 2014 12:43 pm
The PlayStation 4 won't recognize discs from previous Sony game consoles, but that might not matter for long. Sony has just announced PlayStation Now, a service that will bring streaming PlayStation games to PS4, PS3, PlayStation Vita, and even televisions, tablets, and smartphones.
It appears to be the company's public-facing brand for Gaikai, the cloud gaming technology it purchased last June, which the company previously said would bring PS3 games to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita later this year. Sony says the technology is already working here at CES, with attendees able to try critically acclaimed action title The Last of Us here in Vegas. Sony will launch a closed beta in the United States at the end of the month, and plans to roll out the service to devices by the end of this summer.
"The tethers that have constrained consumption for decades... soon dissolve," says Sony CEO Kaz Hirai.
PlayStation Now: PS4 & Gaikai streaming service renamed, detailed
PlayStation 4′s Gaikai-enabled streaming technology has been re-branded as ‘PlayStation Now.’ Sony revealed the newly-titled service at CES 2014, along with details regarding its roll-out across North America this summer.
It follows Twitch announcing that PS4 accounted for 20% of the service’s streamed games over the holidays, and Sony’s reveal that it saw 4.2 million PS4 consoles sold since launch.
Over on the PlayStation Blog, Sony confirmed that PS Now will enable the streaming of PS3 games on PS4 initially, before moving on to PS Vita.
In addition, Sony’s 2014 Bravia TV line will come with the service embedded, and will expend to non-Sony devices with internet connections over time.
At CES 2014, Sony’s Andrew House explained that PlayStation Now works similar to TV and movie streaming services like Netflix, with games hosted on the cloud that can be played on any PS4 or PS Vita by entering your Sony Entertainment Network account.
Your save data will also transfer across consoles. In more cloud wizardry, you can even pause your game on one console and resume it on another, stop playing on a PS4 and pick up again on PS3, or take the game with you on PS Vita before resuming it on your Bravia TV. Fancy.
PS Now will enter beta in North America at the end of January. It will offer games for a monthly subscription fee or on a pay-per-rental basis. Multiplayer and trophy support will be offered as standard.
CVG reports that Beyond, God of War Ascension, The Last of Us and Puppeteer were playable using the service on PS Vita handhelds and Bravia TVs.