Sony’s long-awaited Internet television service will debut within the next two weeks. PlayStation Vue, as it’s being called, is expected to compete with other newcomers like Sling TV although the rollout will be limited early on.
Sony Computer Entertainment president Andrew House told The Wall Street Journal that the commercial rollout would begin in Chicago, New York and Philadelphia following an invite-only beta that’s been running for months now. The plan is to expand nationwide by the end of the year, House said.
The Japanese electronics giant first announced its cloud-based television service last November. Sony said it aims to offer roughly 75 channels per market – far more than Sling TV's existing catalog. The one trump card that Sling TV owns, however, is a relationship with Disney which happens to own the ESPN family of sports networks as well as ABC.
Vue will carry other popular channels, however, including CBS, FOX, NBC, Comedy Central, Discovery and FX, just to name a few. Best yet, there’s a DVR aspect that’ll allow users to watch shows up to 28 days after they’ve been “tagged.”
Vue will initially be offered through the company’s PS3 and PS4 game consoles as a way to drive up adoption. Ultimately, the app will expand to Apple’s iPad and other devices to better compete with similar offerings.
Interested parties will be able to subscribe on a month-to-month basis and although we don’t yet know how much it’ll cost, Sony said they plan to price it competitively with no hidden fees.
Price will no doubt make or break the service. If positioned closer to Sling TV’s attractive $20 per month rate, it could be a major hit. But some think it’ll debut in the $50 to $80 range which, if true, would price it in line with traditional cable service and more or less defeat the purpose for many.