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The big picture: The shift in consumer behavior shouldn’t come as much of a surprise. Content creators and distributors have hopped aboard the streaming bandwagon en masse, with services like Netflix, Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+ and Peacock offering huge digital libraries that can be viewed across a variety of devices in exchange for a reasonable monthly fee.
Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) will no longer offer movie and TV purchases and rentals via the PlayStation Store as of August 31, 2021.
In a blog post explaining the decision, the head of SIE’s video business, Vanessa Lee, said they’ve seen tremendous growth from PlayStation fans using subscription- and ad-based entertainment streaming services on their consoles.
Similar trends are also being observed in the music industry. According to RIAA’s 2020 year-end report, the overwhelming majority of US music industry revenues – 83 percent – came from streaming. Digital downloads, like those that Sony will be ending this summer, accounted for just six percent of music industry revenue last year. Even physical content such as CDs and vinyl did better, capturing nine percent of the pie.
Sony notes that when the PlayStation Store changes take effect, users will still have access to movie and TV content they have previously purchased.