Hope you're not SENtimental - PSN is getting more than a name change

Further to the emails that went out over the weekend to PlayStation Network subscribers that outlined that PlayStation Network accounts would be renamed to Sony Entertainment Network accounts, Sony has confirmed to Eurogamer that there is a little more to this move than just a name change.

Originally, it was assumed that nothing would change apart from the name. However, it is not just PlayStation Network accounts that will be changed, but “the entire PSN platform will become Sony Entertainment Network.” This shouldn't affect the content users have purchased and features like trophies should still exist. It is implied that we'll see user-interface changes in the near future too.

A spokesperson for Sony confirmed that the PSN being changed to SEN will make it “clearer and easier” for people to associate everything that Sony does.  It would appear that this is another way of marketing the company’s services which could work out if executed properly. It is rare to see Sony, completely renovate and change the look and feel of one of its services; this almost seems a little Microsoft-esque.

It's quite peculiar for Sony to apply such a change now, when Sony's biggest entertainment platform is the PlayStation 3 and that in itself is over five years old. It's not so much a case of whether SEN is the same service that users were getting with PSN because it probably is, it's more of a case of why it is happening now. It would seem that the PlayStation Vita release could have something to do with it but could this also mean that these are the first few steps towards Sony's next generation entertainment platforms?

Either way, a firmware update will be released for the PS3 in the near future that will allow users of the system to fully utilize SEN features. This suggests SEN exceeds the what PSN could do and should offer a better overall service, but we’ll learn more then. Hopefully the security, content, functionality and overall features improve.

PlayStation Network accounts are to be renamed Sony Entertainment Network accounts from tomorrow, 7th February.

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This is probably a way of unifying all of their available digital download services - for example, their services for the walkman, PSP, xperia phones, playstation 3 and now the vita - as well as the other devices I'm probably forgetting. Previously (and we've seen this with other companies too) Sony had different devices which had different distribution platforms, and this almost certainly meant different licensing for each of these platforms.

Also, we'd have things like Sony Music having to collaborate with SCE just so we can get some music downloading facilities, and then deal with cross-platform licensing issues which is just silly considering it's all under the same corporate banner (Sony),

With SEN in place, everything such as digital game downloads, music, movies, whatever else, all gets thrown onto the SEN and then Sony can filter appropriately (for example, there's no point having Xperia Play games visible when browsing the SEN on the PS3).

Well, I welcome some change and updates. PSN and the whole menu system of the PS3 is a little out of date now. Would be cool to have a fresh and powerful new system.

Every time I see SEN I think of the StarCraft 2 professional player with the same name. I hope Sony's SEN is less disappointing though.

Sony Entertainment Network will include much much more services, including music and video stores (with renting possibilities), a picture sharing website, ... They're going to start using it on all their platforms. Will also be available for Android and iOS.

JamesWeb said,
In my line of work SEN stands for Special Educational Needs.

... Just sayin'.

As someone who has done work in a special needs school before, I had to laugh - I never thought of the correlation before but yeah

JamesWeb said,
In my line of work SEN stands for Special Educational Needs.

... Just sayin'.


My line of work too. What do you do James?

"what's in a name? That which we call a Rose, will by any other name, still smell as sweet (or suck as much)"

So, Nintendo Wi-Fi Connection is being renamed Nintendo Network & Playstation Network is being renamed Sony Entertainment Network! xD

Anthonyd said,
"PSN got hacked, rename it and says it has never been compromised".
For the non-geek, it does help the brand for said reasons. Aol would benefit from a name change as well.

Anthonyd said,
"PSN got hacked, rename it and says it has never been compromised".

Sony have never hidden behind the fact that they were hacked and did as much as possible to make it secure. This may be like a v2 of its infrastructure learning from previous mistakes.
If they are rolling out a branch of the service to non PlayStation devices then the change of name makes sense.

AbandonedTrolley said,

Sony have never hidden behind the fact that they were hacked and did as much as possible to make it secure. This may be like a v2 of its infrastructure learning from previous mistakes.
If they are rolling out a branch of the service to non PlayStation devices then the change of name makes sense.

You can be upfront about a negative event and still adjust your brand to get rid of negative connotations. I'm very sure a major factor was the hacking scandal. It isn't the sole reason, I'm sure, but if they plan to reach out to more than just the core Playstation base they are very well aware of those new people potentially only hearing of PSN in connection with the security problems.

Otherwise, they would keep it. Microsoft is pushing "XBOX" as far as they can with it being used on Windows Phone and upcoming Windows 8 alongside the XBOX itself... Sony isn't giving up that cross-branding strategy for fun.

This seems rather odd for Sony. They've always subscribed to the "fix it and forget it" philosophy of doing business...