The PS Now beta has been quite the interesting experience for both consumers and for Sony. Some people do not care for the rental model that Sony has implemented, while others thoroughly enjoy the service is delivers. One thing people can all agree on is the idea itself is phenomenal, it just needs some refining.
So what would you as a consumer prefer? A PS Now payment model that goes the way of subscriptions or one that focuses on rentals? Personally, the former would be better because it would be a one-time payment and money wouldn't be a consideration every time you wanted to play a game. PlayStation Europe boss Jim Ryan acknowledged that Sony is looking at various ways for the company to correctly position PS Now's payment model, and subscription is one of them.
"We're learning about all sorts of things and technical stuff, tons of data about the number of people who use the service concurrently and measuring that against install base. So all of that stuff is new to us and we're learning every single day the beta's ongoing.
"One of the things we're learning is that rental is one model and it's attractive for some people, but others may be more interested in some sort of subscription approach, and that's also something that we're looking at.
"So, you know, the list is kind of too long to fit into this short chat. 'Learning' is the right word, because this is a new business for us and we have to be kind of humble and accept that we don't understand it yet, and learn quickly," Ryan said.
PS Now is an incredible service for gamers and is one we want to see succeed, but with that being said, Sony does need to provide the right payment model for people. Consumers are most likely going to be more interested in a subscription model than one that employs rentals.
If Sony did go with the subscription model, though, how would that price be determined and what benefits would come with it? Would there be different types of subscriptions that would grant access to a certain amount of games each month? These are definitely difficult questions to answer when it comes to PS Now because there are a variety of third party publishers that are invested in the program and will be entitled to portions of PS Now's sales. At the same time, Sony doesn't want to charge consumers too much more for a PS Now subscription either.
PS Now is obviously still a work in progress and Sony will need to be careful with the payment model it ultimately decides on. It's an outstanding service that gamers will love, but the payment model that is chosen could end up making or breaking the service.