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PS4 Online Features

PS4 Online Features

Will The PlayStation 4 Win The Online Console War?

An always online console appears to be an acquired taste.

Such was the controversy surrounding Microsoft from gamers during E3 in June that the company completely reversed its strategy for the Xbox One, canning its DRM policies and a number of other online-centric features.

But what of the PlayStation 4? What’s Sony offering with its online features, and will the console’s online options set it apart from its contenders?

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Slick streaming options

One of the PlayStation 4’s most impressive features is its streaming abilities. Pressing the stream button on your controller uploads clips of your last fifteen minutes of gametime to Twitch or Ustream.

Others can watch and comment on your game, while you can have a visual of yourself on-screen and commentate with the PlayStation Camera. The streaming feature isn’t available on Xbox One yet, with gamers able to use the feature as soon as they plug in their PlayStation 4.

Streams can also be shared on Twitter and Facebook. Will live game streaming be the next big spectator sport? If so then the PlayStation 4 will have a big help in spreading the phenomenon across the globe.

A free PlayStation Network

Xbox Live Gold is pretty much a necessity to enjoy the majority of Xbox One’s features. And while PlayStation Plus is needed to play multiplayer games with your friends in a similar manner to Gold, a lot of third-party apps can be accessed for free.

A number of the PlayStation Network’s features will still be free to use. Eric Lempel, vice president of Sony Network Entertainment told GamesIndustry International “We kept everything else free to the user.

“So for example, we've got 11 partner apps right off the bat... that are not gated at all. This is something our competition isn't doing." A PlayStation Plus membership can also be used across the PS4, PS3, and PS Vita.

Appy days

Free apps for the PlayStation 4 include Netflix which will please movie lovers. A total of 18 apps will be available across Europe from day one, Sony has recently confirmed, and can be used without a PlayStation Plus account.

PlayStation 4 owners in the UK will get access to BBC iPlayer, BBC Sports, BBC News, Demand 5, IGN, Amazon/LOVEFiLM, Music Unlimited, Video Unlimited, and VidZone.

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