Here's why Sony rejected Microsoft's request for cross-platform play in Minecraft

At this point, it won't be unjustifiable to say that Minecraft is a global phenomenon. With more than a 120 million copies sold across numerous platforms, spin-off games - with the promise of more to come - the IP is nothing short of a success. In fact, these are few of the many reasons which lead to Microsoft's acquisition of Minecraft's developer Mojang for $2.5 billion back in 2015.

At E3 2017 this year, Microsoft announced that it is bringing 4K visuals to Minecraft, and more importantly, the ability to cross-play across console, PC, and mobile. However, Sony refused to join the party, despite Microsoft and Mojang's request to do so.

In an interview with Eurogamer, PlayStation global sales and marketing head Jim Ryan, claimed that the reason for this was that Sony has to be "mindful of our responsibility to our install base". He explained that:

Minecraft - The demographic playing that, you know as well as I do, it's all ages but it's also very young. We have a contract with the people who go online with us, that we look after them and they are within the PlayStation curated universe. Exposing what in many cases are children to external influences we have no ability to manage or look after, it's something we have to think about very carefully.

The executive argued that Nintendo caters to young gamers more than Sony, so it's not surprising that the company didn't reject Microsoft's invitation for cross-platform play. However, he clarified that Sony's words aren't set set in stone, and it wouldn't be unusual if the company changed its stance later, saying that:

Everybody has to take their own decisions. [...] I don't think anything is ever a done deal. Anybody who is dogmatic in that manner is typically a fool.

So, for now, it seems like PlayStation 4 players will be isolated to their own platform, with other gamers on different systems being given the ability to play with each other.

Source: Eurogamer via PC Gamer

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Sony is a weird company. I think the PS4 is a beautiful console (much more so than the XB1 and XB1S), and they have better exclusives than Xbox, but their poor handling of Fallout 4 and Skyrim SE mods, and this, makes me not want to own one any time soon.

Their phone division is equally weird. They sell smartphones in the US, but they don't work on our biggest carrier (Verizon) and they have the fingerprint reader disabled. And yet it costs nearly as much as flagships that work on all our carriers and have working fingerprint readers.

I'm inclined to believe that someone at Sony, likely in Japan, just hates Americans, and needs to be replaced with a more forward thinking individual, for the sake of the company. Sony could be so much more, but they make stupid decisions that really don't do them any favors.

Sony is a weird company. I think the PS4 is a beautiful console (much more so than the XB1 and XB1S), and they have better exclusives than Xbox, but their poor handling of Fallout 4 and Skyrim SE mods, and this, makes me not want to own one any time soon.

Their phone division is equally weird. They sell smartphones in the US, but they don't work on our biggest carrier (Verizon) and they have the fingerprint reader disabled. And yet it costs nearly as much as flagships that work on all our carriers and have working fingerprint readers.

I'm inclined to believe that someone at Sony, likely in Japan, just hates Americans, and needs to be replaced with a more forward thinking individual, for the sake of the company. Sony could be so much more, but they make stupid decisions that really don't do them any favors.

Regarding block of fingerprint reader in US, it isn't only Sony that does this, same for the LG G6 (wireless charging disabled in every other country except US and Korea) it's a patent royalty thing, but as a customer you can get around it by flashing a US ROM or something. I think in the case of LG they would have to pay royalties to Qualcomm outside of manufacturing countries (Qualcomm is US company, and the chips are manufactured in Korea).

It all comes down to money, and the consumer ultimately loses out due to mark ups and profiteering.

Sony is a weird company. I think the PS4 is a beautiful console (much more so than the XB1 and XB1S), and they have better exclusives than Xbox, but their poor handling of Fallout 4 and Skyrim SE mods, and this, makes me not want to own one any time soon.

Their phone division is equally weird. They sell smartphones in the US, but they don't work on our biggest carrier (Verizon) and they have the fingerprint reader disabled. And yet it costs nearly as much as flagships that work on all our carriers and have working fingerprint readers.

I'm inclined to believe that someone at Sony, likely in Japan, just hates Americans, and needs to be replaced with a more forward thinking individual, for the sake of the company. Sony could be so much more, but they make stupid decisions that really don't do them any favors.

I would say it's more your useless mobile providers who cause the problems with their phones.

For what they charge, they should pay for the patents they use. You shouldn't have to void your warranty and lose signal quality — Sony owners have said they lose signal quality when running UK firmware to enable the fingerprint signal — to use the hardware you paid for. And that's the thing, they're charging you for the hardware and not letting you use it. If you pay them and you buy the phone honestly, as opposed to stealing it somehow, they should pay for the technology in it. As opposed to using stolen tech and only enabling it in countries that won't hold them accountable for doing so. That is scummy behavior.

I would say it's more your useless mobile providers who cause the problems with their phones.

They aren't useless. The US is many times larger than your country, unless your country is Australia, and Verizon covers more of it than any other carrier. The first thing I want of any phone is that I can get signal where I would want it. Between towns, where there wouldn't be another phone for many miles. That is why I am happy to pay Verizon every month. I do not like some of the political things they do, but they are absolutely the best carrier in the US, and anyone who has coverage elsewhere is compromising. They're paying less and getting what they pay for. That might work out well for them depending on where they live, work, and travel, but I personally insist on the best coverage. That, and prompt security updates, are two points I'm unwilling to budge on (and willing to pay for).

In any case, do you agree or disagree that both hardware and service should be 100% agnostic to one another? Any computer or video game console will work with any dial-up, cable, or DSL provider. Why shift blame to the carriers when a phone locks them out? Sony blocks Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular by not supporting the CDMA bands. That is not the carriers' fault. There are $100-$200 phones that support all the bands, so it is not a matter of cost with flagship phones. Now if a phone supports all the bands and a carrier locks it to theirs, the fault is theirs alone. Again, all phones and carriers should be 100% agnostic to one another. If you disagree, explain why.

For what they charge, they should pay for the patents they use. You shouldn't have to void your warranty and lose signal quality — Sony owners have said they lose signal quality when running UK firmware to enable the fingerprint signal — to use the hardware you paid for. And that's the thing, they're charging you for the hardware and not letting you use it. If you pay them and you buy the phone honestly, as opposed to stealing it somehow, they should pay for the technology in it. As opposed to using stolen tech and only enabling it in countries that won't hold them accountable for doing so. That is scummy behavior.

I would say it's more your useless mobile providers who cause the problems with their phones.

They aren't useless. The US is many times larger than your country, unless your country is Australia, and Verizon covers more of it than any other carrier. The first thing I want of any phone is that I can get signal where I would want it. Between towns, where there wouldn't be another phone for many miles. That is why I am happy to pay Verizon every month. I do not like some of the political things they do, but they are absolutely the best carrier in the US, and anyone who has coverage elsewhere is compromising. They're paying less and getting what they pay for. That might work out well for them depending on where they live, work, and travel, but I personally insist on the best coverage. That, and prompt security updates, are two points I'm unwilling to budge on (and willing to pay for).

In any case, do you agree or disagree that both hardware and service should be 100% agnostic to one another? Any computer or video game console will work with any dial-up, cable, or DSL provider. Why shift blame to the carriers when a phone locks them out? Sony blocks Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular by not supporting the CDMA bands. That is not the carriers' fault. There are $100-$200 phones that support all the bands, so it is not a matter of cost with flagship phones. Now if a phone supports all the bands and a carrier locks it to theirs, the fault is theirs alone. Again, all phones and carriers should be 100% agnostic to one another. If you disagree, explain why.

A couple points:

- You can enable/disable cdma bands on phones, all you have to do is flash the radio
- Sony can make products that only work with a specific toaster if they wanted to. They don't have to make anything platform agnostic.
- Secretly AT&T is the largest cellular provider in the US.
- They're pretty useless. Or if not useless, they're pretty scummy with their practices and 100% anti consumer.
- I wouldn't say best carrier, not by userbase, not by coverage, not by prices, not by artificial restrictions imposed on Verizon-specific phones, and certainly not by the bloatware they preinstall.
- By paying verizon the unfathomable amounts you do every month, you're not getting better service, you're just getting ripped off.
- By forcing companies to make hardware that is 100% service agnostic, you're restricting their ability to create freely and all you're doing is creating a bland market because everybody has to be compatible with the lowest common denominator. I understand patent issues, but intellectual property is intellectual property (and you're not entitled to any of it).
- Sprint and Verizon no longer use CDMA bands due to their inefficiency.
- Radio frequencies are not as straightforward as sending packets over copper wire or glass fiber.

If anyone notices something that is factually incorrect, feel free to correct me.

For what they charge, they should pay for the patents they use. You shouldn't have to void your warranty and lose signal quality — Sony owners have said they lose signal quality when running UK firmware to enable the fingerprint signal — to use the hardware you paid for. And that's the thing, they're charging you for the hardware and not letting you use it. If you pay them and you buy the phone honestly, as opposed to stealing it somehow, they should pay for the technology in it. As opposed to using stolen tech and only enabling it in countries that won't hold them accountable for doing so. That is scummy behavior.

I would say it's more your useless mobile providers who cause the problems with their phones.

They aren't useless. The US is many times larger than your country, unless your country is Australia, and Verizon covers more of it than any other carrier. The first thing I want of any phone is that I can get signal where I would want it. Between towns, where there wouldn't be another phone for many miles. That is why I am happy to pay Verizon every month. I do not like some of the political things they do, but they are absolutely the best carrier in the US, and anyone who has coverage elsewhere is compromising. They're paying less and getting what they pay for. That might work out well for them depending on where they live, work, and travel, but I personally insist on the best coverage. That, and prompt security updates, are two points I'm unwilling to budge on (and willing to pay for).

In any case, do you agree or disagree that both hardware and service should be 100% agnostic to one another? Any computer or video game console will work with any dial-up, cable, or DSL provider. Why shift blame to the carriers when a phone locks them out? Sony blocks Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular by not supporting the CDMA bands. That is not the carriers' fault. There are $100-$200 phones that support all the bands, so it is not a matter of cost with flagship phones. Now if a phone supports all the bands and a carrier locks it to theirs, the fault is theirs alone. Again, all phones and carriers should be 100% agnostic to one another. If you disagree, explain why.

Agreed - that is why I was a VZW prepaid customer and why I am on a VZW MVNO today (Tracfone). It's not like have no experience with other carriers - I do, and specifically with T-Mobile and Sprint; the only carrier I DON'T have experience with (as a customer) of the Big Four is AT&T Mobility. Between VZW, T-M, and Sprint, VZW wins - everywhere; exurbs, suburbs, and urban areas. Coverage matters - period - and that IS a matter of who your carrier is. I don't travel much - however, when I do, I naturally expect my cell phone to work where I go - with VZW (and thus with Tracfone) it does. Even better, I don't have to roam to do it - not even in Greater Las Vegas (the home - ironically - of T-Mobile Arena).

For what they charge, they should pay for the patents they use. You shouldn't have to void your warranty and lose signal quality — Sony owners have said they lose signal quality when running UK firmware to enable the fingerprint signal — to use the hardware you paid for. And that's the thing, they're charging you for the hardware and not letting you use it. If you pay them and you buy the phone honestly, as opposed to stealing it somehow, they should pay for the technology in it. As opposed to using stolen tech and only enabling it in countries that won't hold them accountable for doing so. That is scummy behavior.

I would say it's more your useless mobile providers who cause the problems with their phones.

They aren't useless. The US is many times larger than your country, unless your country is Australia, and Verizon covers more of it than any other carrier. The first thing I want of any phone is that I can get signal where I would want it. Between towns, where there wouldn't be another phone for many miles. That is why I am happy to pay Verizon every month. I do not like some of the political things they do, but they are absolutely the best carrier in the US, and anyone who has coverage elsewhere is compromising. They're paying less and getting what they pay for. That might work out well for them depending on where they live, work, and travel, but I personally insist on the best coverage. That, and prompt security updates, are two points I'm unwilling to budge on (and willing to pay for).

In any case, do you agree or disagree that both hardware and service should be 100% agnostic to one another? Any computer or video game console will work with any dial-up, cable, or DSL provider. Why shift blame to the carriers when a phone locks them out? Sony blocks Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular by not supporting the CDMA bands. That is not the carriers' fault. There are $100-$200 phones that support all the bands, so it is not a matter of cost with flagship phones. Now if a phone supports all the bands and a carrier locks it to theirs, the fault is theirs alone. Again, all phones and carriers should be 100% agnostic to one another. If you disagree, explain why.

A couple points:

- You can enable/disable cdma bands on phones, all you have to do is flash the radio
- Sony can make products that only work with a specific toaster if they wanted to. They don't have to make anything platform agnostic.
- Secretly AT&T is the largest cellular provider in the US.
- They're pretty useless. Or if not useless, they're pretty scummy with their practices and 100% anti consumer.
- I wouldn't say best carrier, not by userbase, not by coverage, not by prices, not by artificial restrictions imposed on Verizon-specific phones, and certainly not by the bloatware they preinstall.
- By paying verizon the unfathomable amounts you do every month, you're not getting better service, you're just getting ripped off.
- By forcing companies to make hardware that is 100% service agnostic, you're restricting their ability to create freely and all you're doing is creating a bland market because everybody has to be compatible with the lowest common denominator. I understand patent issues, but intellectual property is intellectual property (and you're not entitled to any of it).
- Sprint and Verizon no longer use CDMA bands due to their inefficiency.
- Radio frequencies are not as straightforward as sending packets over copper wire or glass fiber.

If anyone notices something that is factually incorrect, feel free to correct me.

"- Secretly AT&T is the largest cellular provider in the US."

OK you're going to have to explain this because it sounds like the largest pile of poo I've ever seen. Why is it a secret? I'm sure AT&T would let us know if they were larger.

"- Secretly AT&T is the largest cellular provider in the US."

OK you're going to have to explain this because it sounds like the largest pile of poo I've ever seen. Why is it a secret? I'm sure AT&T would let us know if they were larger.

It's a figure of speech, it's not a secret. I didn't mean that AT&T is this underground organization that doesn't publish numbers regarding their customer base.

Sony is a weird company. I think the PS4 is a beautiful console (much more so than the XB1 and XB1S), and they have better exclusives than Xbox, but their poor handling of Fallout 4 and Skyrim SE mods, and this, makes me not want to own one any time soon.

Their phone division is equally weird. They sell smartphones in the US, but they don't work on our biggest carrier (Verizon) and they have the fingerprint reader disabled. And yet it costs nearly as much as flagships that work on all our carriers and have working fingerprint readers.

I'm inclined to believe that someone at Sony, likely in Japan, just hates Americans, and needs to be replaced with a more forward thinking individual, for the sake of the company. Sony could be so much more, but they make stupid decisions that really don't do them any favors.

Sony is a very traditional Japanese company. Japanese culture is very different than that of Western countries. Much of their weird choices stems from their culture. Don't get me wrong I don't mean that in a bad way, although I do agree with you that a more forward thinker would bring Sony back to their former glory.

For what they charge, they should pay for the patents they use. You shouldn't have to void your warranty and lose signal quality — Sony owners have said they lose signal quality when running UK firmware to enable the fingerprint signal — to use the hardware you paid for. And that's the thing, they're charging you for the hardware and not letting you use it. If you pay them and you buy the phone honestly, as opposed to stealing it somehow, they should pay for the technology in it. As opposed to using stolen tech and only enabling it in countries that won't hold them accountable for doing so. That is scummy behavior.

I would say it's more your useless mobile providers who cause the problems with their phones.

They aren't useless. The US is many times larger than your country, unless your country is Australia, and Verizon covers more of it than any other carrier. The first thing I want of any phone is that I can get signal where I would want it. Between towns, where there wouldn't be another phone for many miles. That is why I am happy to pay Verizon every month. I do not like some of the political things they do, but they are absolutely the best carrier in the US, and anyone who has coverage elsewhere is compromising. They're paying less and getting what they pay for. That might work out well for them depending on where they live, work, and travel, but I personally insist on the best coverage. That, and prompt security updates, are two points I'm unwilling to budge on (and willing to pay for).

In any case, do you agree or disagree that both hardware and service should be 100% agnostic to one another? Any computer or video game console will work with any dial-up, cable, or DSL provider. Why shift blame to the carriers when a phone locks them out? Sony blocks Verizon, Sprint, and US Cellular by not supporting the CDMA bands. That is not the carriers' fault. There are $100-$200 phones that support all the bands, so it is not a matter of cost with flagship phones. Now if a phone supports all the bands and a carrier locks it to theirs, the fault is theirs alone. Again, all phones and carriers should be 100% agnostic to one another. If you disagree, explain why.

My country IS Australia.

I don't need a run down. I know your operators are useless and I know how mobiles work. You can try and say they aren't, but you get a raw deal from service, coverage, speed, price, devices, software, and basically everything that most of the world don't. That's across the board.

Agreed - that is why I was a VZW prepaid customer and why I am on a VZW MVNO today (Tracfone). It's not like have no experience with other carriers - I do, and specifically with T-Mobile and Sprint; the only carrier I DON'T have experience with (as a customer) of the Big Four is AT&T Mobility. Between VZW, T-M, and Sprint, VZW wins - everywhere; exurbs, suburbs, and urban areas. Coverage matters - period - and that IS a matter of who your carrier is. I don't travel much - however, when I do, I naturally expect my cell phone to work where I go - with VZW (and thus with Tracfone) it does. Even better, I don't have to roam to do it - not even in Greater Las Vegas (the home - ironically - of T-Mobile Arena).

I was devastated recently to find that my Aus roaming didn't work on VZW. A real shame, where AT&T and T-Mobile were letting me down, VZW were there, I just couldn't register.

Ironically it means if you have only a PS4 you will have to buy another platform to play with friends on anything else, I wouldnt expect that to hurt the others. I can see a lot of mobile users playing with xbox/switch users at the same time instead of split screen etc.

Also if they are in to the mobile minecraft they will be more tempted to get it on a console as well potentially but if they want to continue to play with their other mobile friends it will have to be something other than a PS.

Yes to play with PS users you would have to buy a PS but Minecraft is massive on mobile phones and if servers take of like it did on PC those mobile users will want to continue playing on servers with their friends when they jump to a console and to pick up where they were they will need to buy a competitor console not a PS.

I do think they will change their mind though and a lot of this depends on how the servers work and how cross platform works. If it works really well though and has a netflix style pick up and continue approach it will be huge.

Just say you don't want to share your network with anyone else and leave it at that, thinking of the poor little kids is a dumb excuse to try and use.

Phil has been open about doing cross-play with anyone else, he doesn't care about it and isn't territorial about it either. Heck, rocket league is coming to the Switch and even that is going to allow Switch players to play vs PC and Xbox players. The one company I expected last to open up it's system to others, Nintendo, seems to be totally fine with the idea.

That's the biggest load of crap I've ever heard, and a big part of the reason I switched to PC as my primary platform.

I stopped playing Minecraft years ago. My minecraft had trains, vehicles, rockets, citizens, new monsters, mascots, weather and new stunning fx. Its amazing how inferior and boring is the vanilla version of Minecraft.

I'm really not sure I understand their reason default_confused.gif What are Sony doing today to protect the children within PSN?

Essentially they are saying they have control & can take necessary action if users break ToS agreements on their own network, and do not want to share online gameplay with services they can't.

Honestly? His reason is BS. The real reason is that Sony don't follow a standard TCP/IP protocol. Their packet size is tiny, so it sends lots of small packets which is inefficient (hence why downloads from the store are extremely slow). Stick a proxy on your PC and connect your PS4 to it, and you'll download at the full speed of your line.

If they were to do cross-platform play, they'd need to re-make their TCP/IP code - which may impact other games which make use of how it is set up. I can dig out the info on what I am on about, if anyone wants it (it was from Reddit where a guy Wiresharked it to find out why downloads were slow and how to fix it).

Honestly? His reason is BS. The real reason is that Sony don't follow a standard TCP/IP protocol. Their packet size is tiny, so it sends lots of small packets which is inefficient (hence why downloads from the store are extremely slow). Stick a proxy on your PC and connect your PS4 to it, and you'll download at the full speed of your line.

If they were to do cross-platform play, they'd need to re-make their TCP/IP code - which may impact other games which make use of how it is set up. I can dig out the info on what I am on about, if anyone wants it (it was from Reddit where a guy Wiresharked it to find out why downloads were slow and how to fix it).

Games typically talk to each others using the same protocol and network code they use on PC and all other consoles. it just happens on top of/inside their closed network. essentially their consoles version of the WWW(which rests on top of the internet). And games typically do not use TCP/IP not because of packet size, but because of error correction. instead they use UDP which skips the error check and packet resend which has no benefit to games and only cause more issues then a few broken/lost packets. and cross talk only means opening ports in their respective networks to allow the games to talk to each other, if they wish. nothing more nothing less. and no it doesn't require any rewrite of PS network code. it doesn't really even come into play here. where it does they simply use an inbetween translator that lets the networks talk to each other for the few things they need to share.

SONY is aware of Microsoft's past history of "devouring" any technology they initially share with others. Give SONY time to evaluate that situation and proceed accordingly.

SONY is aware of Microsoft's past history of "devouring" any technology they initially share with others. Give SONY time to evaluate that situation and proceed accordingly.

And Sony's past history of attempted and sometimes successful proprietary lock in. Does Betamax, memory stick, mini disc, DAT tape, or UMD ring a bell?

This is corporate hardball and we all know it. Its business and we all understand. Just don't play it off like its really about protecting the kids.

SONY is aware of Microsoft's past history of "devouring" any technology they initially share with others. Give SONY time to evaluate that situation and proceed accordingly.

So what part of cross talk API's is going to devour each other ?

oh look, MS use TCP/IP to go online, they're so going to devour the internet and the web... seriously...

No one is sharing any technology here, they're just opening communications ports through cross talk API's letting games talk to each other on the network protocols they already use on both platforms on top of the platform layers. This is just Sony goign back on their original mocking of mocking MS for not allowing cross talk and seeing that cross talk doesn't benefit their sales, so screw their users.

Sony the company that complained about MS not allowing cross game play, then when MS does, they refuse to join the party...

This sounds like reasonable explanation, to me. Not that I agree with it- I don't think much damage will be done to children by hearing some naughty language or see a few phallic structures in Minecraft. Parents are always welcome to do their job, of course. "Kids, what you're seeing is stupid, but also kind of funny and it's okay to laugh at it. "

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