Analysts believe Sony will soon strip down the free services of the PlayStation Network, and will offer nothing but multiplayer gaming at free cost.
“I think it’s unlikely that they will require a fee,” Michael Pacther of Wedbush Securities told GamesIndustry.biz, “but think they will strip down the free version to multiplayer and not much else in order to encourage people to pay the fee.”
“Providing networked services for online gaming is not inexpensive, and charging for these services would help Sony defray those costs,” consented Billy Pidgeon of M2 Research. “I think Sony would best benefit by continuing to build out on the currently employed freemium model, charging for enhanced, tiered and incremental items, services and add-ons to add value to the online gaming experience.”
“The PlayStation Plus program provides great incentives for subscribers,” he continued, “and Sony can get more revenue from advertising, item transactions and specialized services to enhance specific aspects of online gameplay such as custom content and rules for use for individuals, guilds and other groups. Sony should also move quickly to shift paid content other than gaming to the network.”
It certainly seems plausible. But how would the fans react? How would you react? Tell us in your comments below.