PlayStation Now: PS4 & Gaikai streaming service renamed, detailed

Tuesday, 7th January 2014 18:54 GMT By Dave Cook

PlayStation 4′s Gaikai-enabled streaming technology has been re-branded as ‘PlayStation Now.’ Sony revealed the newly-titled service at CES 2014, along with details regarding its roll-out across North America this summer.

It follows Twitch announcing that PS4 accounted for 20% of the service’s streamed games over the holidays, and Sony’s reveal that it saw 4.2 million PS4 consoles sold since launch.

Over on the PlayStation Blog, Sony confirmed that PS Now will enable the streaming of PS3 games on PS4 initially, before moving on to PS Vita.

In addition, Sony’s 2014 Bravia TV line will come with the service embedded, and will expend to non-Sony devices with
internet connections over time.

At CES 2014, Sony’s Andrew House explained that PlayStation Now works similar to TV and movie streaming services like Netflix, with games hosted on the cloud that can be played on any PS4 or PS Vita by entering your Sony Entertainment Network account.

Your save data will also transfer across consoles. In more cloud wizardry, you can even pause your game on one console and resume it on another, stop playing on a PS4 and pick up again on PS3, or take the game with you on PS Vita before resuming it on your Bravia TV. Fancy.

PS Now will enter beta in North America at the end of January. It will offer games for a monthly subscription fee or on a pay-per-rental basis. Multiplayer and trophy support will be offered as standard.

CVG reports that Beyond, God of War Ascension, The Last of Us and Puppeteer were playable using the service on PS Vita handhelds and Bravia TVs.

Let us know what you think below.



  1. Dragon

    Could be a BIG game-changer. However, it would be interesting to know what their plans are for controls. I guess DS3/4 support of all tablets and smartphones incoming.

    Brilliant move is obviously not restricting it Vita and PS4, hence massively increasing its reach.

    Pricing is obviously key here. But judging how insanely awesome value PS Plus offers, I expect PS Now to have good plans too.

    #1 12 months ago
  2. Dragon

    Some info on launch games-
    “For launch, the games available will no doubt be limited, but Sony’s Andrew House did confirm that Naughty Dog’s The Last of Us and Quantic Dream’s Beyond: Two Souls will be among the titles available to play without a PlayStation 3 at CES in order to test out the service. Sony has since confirmed that God of War: Ascension and Puppeteer will also be playable on PS Vita and Bravia televisions on the CES show floor.”

    And adding to that, its also an on-demand TV service too.

    Make no mistake, this is the easily the biggest move for Sony this year, bigger than PS4.

    #2 12 months ago
  3. Erthazus

    I see no point in this at all. Basically it is a backwards compatible with subscription model with old games. Buy or rent yourself The Last Of Us second time.

    Who don’t own PS3 or PS4 can play this game on the Sony Bravia TV.. with what controller???? and not sure that a lot of people want to experience The Last Of Us on the tablet device… with touch controls.

    So far, it is a useless feature.

    Ahh, and I played Mass Effect 2 and Dead Space 3 on the Gaikai service when it was available. It was a bad experience with lags I can deal with, but when the game looks worse then a console game… That’s another story.

    IMO, it could be a good thing for PS4 demo’s but so far it is not in sony’s plan.

    #3 12 months ago
  4. Dave Cook

    @3 Then you’re suffering from a severe case of narrow-mindedness. It is STARTING with PS3 games. It is a roll-out.

    This is a real game-changer.

    #4 12 months ago
  5. Erthazus

    Yes PS3 games and?

    What is a game-changer? OnLive streamed, Gaikai did this before (with console games such as Mass Effect 2, DA2 and Dead space 3) that looked horrible even compared to console experience. I’m not talking about lags right now.

    #5 12 months ago
  6. manamana

    Can’t wait to see what impact it has on real life entertainment.

    #6 12 months ago
  7. Dave Cook

    @5 Pointless even talking to you about it Erth. If you can’t see the long-term, iterative pros of this service now then there’s no point even trying to convince you.


    #7 12 months ago
  8. Fin

    This could be amazing – with Sony’s reach, it could be the first Netflix of games.


    I think you mean “shitty sub hd console eyes bleeding blah blah blah blah”.

    #8 12 months ago
  9. fihar

    “Non-Sony devices with internet connections over time”

    Now this is what I call not putting all of your eggs in one basket.
    Assuming that one subscription would cover all eventual devices, then yes, this is definitely a potential game changer.

    #9 12 months ago
  10. Dragon

    Btw, as I said earlier, its not just a game-streaming service, its an entertainment streaming service, with live TV included.
    Remember that Sony-Viacom deal, this could well be the culmination of that. Why would anyone stay with set-top boxes anymore if on-demand streaming service comes?

    Obviously, such a thing has not happened because companies like Time Warner arent fools to let something this take off and kill their cable biz. It would be interesting to see how much content Sony can sign for this service.

    Just think, if Sony can muster up enough content to match cable services, what was the point of X1 TVTVTVTV thing? Now will eliminate the need to connect to an set-top box.
    Of course, the big IF is whether Sony can coerce enough companies to join this service.

    #10 12 months ago
  11. Ireland Michael

    It really isn’t, in my honest opinion.

    This will be a novelty at best. It’s a great concept in theory, but the reality is far duller and far less enjoyable – sub optimal resolution, latency, disconnects, bandwidth sucking data usage. And good luck getting a decent experience out of these games with touch controls.

    People who want these games will just buy them. The hardware is not exactly expensive, and most often games cost pennies now.

    The game streaming ship already sailed. And it sank on its maiden voyage.

    #11 12 months ago
  12. manamana

    @Erzus/ireland & co. what about this part isn’t absolutely new?

    Your save data will also transfer across consoles. In more cloud wizardry, you can even pause your game on one console and resume it on another, stop playing on a PS4 and pick up again on PS3, or take the game with you on PS Vita before resuming it on your Bravia TV.

    But yeah, lets bash it,ffs.

    #12 12 months ago
  13. Erthazus

    @Dave, Because you don’t see long-term terative pros of this service and never used it, but I used it and played actual games in it not just for 5 minutes, but almost finished games in them.

    This was the reason why both Onlive and Gaikai flopped and GaiKai worked pretty well for it’s time with all it’s lags and issues.

    and stop running from the discussion. So far you don’t make yourself really smart if you think that you see a point in this. So far you don’t. you just told me that I’m an idiot and ran away basically.

    @manamana,”Your save data will also transfer across consoles.”

    Pretty much what cloud already do on the PS3/PS4.

    “In more cloud wizardry, you can even pause your game on one console and resume it on another, stop playing on a PS4 and pick up again on PS3, or take the game with you on PS Vita before resuming it on your Bravia TV.”

    Remember transfarring?

    This is exactly The Same feature you are talking about. Nothing new at all. In fact it is possible to do for every game if Devs really wanted.

    #13 12 months ago
  14. manamana

    @8 and indeed, he said so :-D

    Edit: #13 shitty sub-developer from 1999 hasnt got a console and another console and a handheld and a tv to pause and play the same game but hey its all shitty here! Smell the shitty sony shitE!

    Ahh, better now.

    #14 12 months ago
  15. mistermogul

    @4 +22

    Also coming built in to new Bravia TV’s is a great feature!

    #15 12 months ago
  16. Ireland Michael

    @12 I’m not bashing it. I’m being realistic abou it’s potential

    If it came with my Plus subscription, I might dip into in from time to time. But for the most part, why would I bother? Unresponsive controls is just the start. Wait until you’ve used up your bandwidth allowance within a week. Or the completely avoidable latency, which will only be worse if you don’t live near the servers running the service.

    People scream about lack of ownership with what Microsoft pulled, and having to be online just to play your game, but this is somehow different? This *is* literally buying a license to play.

    #16 12 months ago
  17. Dave Cook

    @16 Bandwidth will improve over time. This is just the beginning. Patience is a virtue. Sony will play a long game with this, just watch.

    #17 12 months ago
  18. manamana

    @16 Well then – don’t use it?!

    #18 12 months ago
  19. Joe Musashi

    This seems to make sense.

    In the same way the Sony leverages their music and movie content to be accessible on consoles, they’re now doing the same with their game content to be accessible on other platforms. And in markets where they already have an established presence.

    They can charge big bucks for this from the outset an alienate an a lot of potential consumers. I would have thought a good launch would be to offer X-months of free access to the service when purchasing certain hardware.

    It certainly seems to be some attempt to unify the assets they produce and get them in front of as many consumers as possible. Hopefully there’ll be less of the left-hand not knowing what the right-hand is doing at SCE now.

    It’s an interesting move and one where few others are positioned to compete.


    #19 12 months ago
  20. Lloytron

    I invested a lot of time and surprisingly little cash in OnLive. For me that technology was amazing and it worked fabulously.

    If this is anything like OnLive, and if the price is right then I’m sold.

    It would be good if streamed games could use existing saved games somehow.

    #20 12 months ago
  21. Erthazus

    If the games quality will be like what I played at the time when Gaikai was then good luck with That future.

    Just because in theory in the future (in a super distant future) you can play games in 1080p or 4K with the best possible quality, does not mean that this is a future that gamers really want. Internet is very limited and with lags and closed-eco system’s and That eco-system is more closed then consoles is not a good thing.

    Renting a game or “play instant demo” is the only good thing but it will happen eventually with console/PC hardware in the end. This is just a software issue in a few years.

    @Ireland Michael, There will be subscription. I think it is Playstation Plus. It must be, otherwise aying two times…

    #21 12 months ago
  22. Ireland Michael

    @17 To play games I either already own or could play natively for a far superior experience.

    @18 I don’t plan to. Since when were people not allow to express critical opinions on things?

    #22 12 months ago
  23. fihar

    You are operating under the assumption that the internet and technology hasn’t or isn’t going to improve though.

    Electric cars used to be hugely impractical, but now they’re just plain impractical.
    Still impractical, but is improving.
    Of course, they were driven by neccesity because of the hike in gasoline prices but still.

    #23 12 months ago
  24. Dragon

    Its not coming Ireland/Europe first due to a reason.
    Its definitely for people with good internet connections, and that number grows ever faster.

    And btw, its not all about games, its “everything”, depending upon how many companies Sony can rope in. Set-top boxes are past IF this service garners enough live TV channels.

    #24 12 months ago
  25. DarkSoulz

    Sweeet use my tablet and dont have to buy a ps4!

    Sony fanboys will get pissed since you cant share those games, MS tried to do that and they got shit on.

    #25 12 months ago
  26. killersense

    i am surprised some of you don’t see the potential. there are millions of people that don’t own playstation devices and this can be a step into that world for them. what if you can stream ps1/ps2/ps3 games on pc as well and play them with a dualshock 4. sony makes money on selling controllers and subscriptions for people that want to play the games on a pc or tablet. ofcourse there are going to be issues with latency and controls but this is them getting people to eventually buy their devices if they desire complete experiences. lot of people out there that haven’t played a last of us because they don’t want to buy a ps3 for it. guess what now you can just buy a controller and play it on whatever device you like albeit with a performance hit. technology is only going to get better and you may even get to play ps4 games on multiple devices and thus bring software revenue for all their first party studio games that don’t sell as well as they deserve sometimes.

    #26 12 months ago
  27. Dragon

    Btw, have to say it-

    #27 12 months ago
  28. Erthazus

    @25, Except that you can’t Play PS4 games on your tablet. Otherwise it’s a suicide mission for Sony’s PS4.

    Only PS1, PS2, PS3

    @26, Except that they did not announced this for the PC.

    If you can stream PS1, PS2 and PS3 titles on your PC then it makes PS4 (or other Sony devices) irrelevant for people who want to play “these titles”. So Sony is going to sell old PS3 titles to PC? What can they sell? The Last Of Us and few PS3 exclusives? Okay… Everything else is available on Steam or GOG.

    On the PC you have already a strong competition with Steam, (Microsoft tries something with Windows 8 app) and other services.

    #28 12 months ago
  29. Ireland Michael

    @23 Latency will always be an issue. Always.

    I love how people think the internet is going to magically get better over time, and we’re all going to live in some sort of Utopian Mega Internet with no issues in the coming years. The only thing that improves are the download speeds. Unless you can afford it, expect throttled speeds and restrictive bandwidth allowances for many years to come.

    Why would I bother with a sub optimal resolution and slow imput control when I can play the game proper? Why would anyone?

    It will be a niche. People will certainly use it, but it won’t become anything even close to a “game-changer” or a replacement for the way we currently play games.

    #29 12 months ago
  30. Lloytron

    @26 lots of folks fear change and innovation. This is the Internet, people will always find something to whine about!

    #30 12 months ago
  31. DarkSoulz

    So MS did the same thing “Always On” and they got shit on, Sony does it and???

    #31 12 months ago
  32. Erthazus

    @30, Innovation is Steam OS. What sony does, Gaikai did this few years ago and Onlive do this right now.

    So tell me what is a change or innovation?

    Btw, Onlive exists and no one cares.

    #32 12 months ago
  33. Ireland Michael

    @30 I fucking love change and innovation. I just don’t think this is either.

    @31 Basically.

    #33 12 months ago
  34. Francis O

    So in addition to PS Plus, there is a PS Now subscription?


    #34 12 months ago
  35. Gekidami

    Except one demanded you actually have the game in your physical possession with online checks just being there, added on to owning the game and one passes the whole game and experience online and therefore needs it to function. Not quite the same, not even remotely.

    #35 12 months ago
  36. Ireland Michael

    @35 Except that it’s not “needed” when you could just buy the hardware and games yourself for next to nothing.

    If this comes as part of PS Plus, it might have some relative convenience for some people, but if not it’s going to end up dead in the water.

    It’s just companies trying to find another excuse to pawn off a service on people.

    #36 12 months ago
  37. killersense

    @ erth

    you do understand the concept that companies especially game companies make money on software not hardware right? i personally don’t think sony cares if you play their ps4 games on other devices. this is obviously for consumers that are willing to take a performance hit instead of buying one of their devices at a higher rate. i know ps4 games is not an option but you would be crazy to think they won’t let you do that in a year or two. i am willing to bet that they will let you atleast play demos in the first year and then full games 2 or 3 years down the line. for people that don’t have the bandwidth or technology available right now or want the ideal experience then there is a ps4 and the ability to buy games at retail like the traditional way and for others this is another option to play sony games without buying the hardware.

    of course this could all fail and technology doesn’t get better or sony could somehow screw this up but there is potential so i am not shooting it down right away like some of you seem to be doing.

    #37 12 months ago
  38. Erthazus

    ” i personally don’t think sony cares if you play their ps4 games on other devices.”

    If that was true, then Sony would announce that they will have PS4 support. So far they have not announced it.

    Sony cares about PS4 a lot. Because it is not just a hardware. It is a system where you can sell music, games, Netflix, movies, services and stuff and everything goes in to the Sony pocket.
    Sony is also a hardware company. They care.

    + Gamers care. Because these games have support and game’s features such as server renting or Party chat. It has it’s own servers and there are multiplayer games that has balanced multiplayer where everyone play’s on the controller.

    So what now? Devs need to develop for PS4, Bravia…. Make games with Touch controls that actually work? Sorry. Bad idea.

    Not really sure that it is going to be a good idea playing multiplayer game with a guy that play’s on the PS4 and guy that play’s on the iPhone in the same match.

    #38 12 months ago
  39. Asgaro


    “and will expend to non-Sony devices with internet connections over time.”

    If they allow it on stuff like tablets, I don’t see why they would disallow it on PC.
    We PC gamers don’t play Sony exclusive games, and we won’t buy a console.

    It’s really an untapped market and Sony would be stupid to not take advantage of this.
    Also, Sony Online Entertainment has tons of PC only games so Sony does make products for PC gamers.

    #39 12 months ago
  40. Erthazus

    @39, Oh yeah. Except that sony Online Entertainment offers ANOTHER subscription for all of their games.

    PC gamers who don’t play Sony exclusives and don’t buy consoles, will never buy a console and will never buy Sony exclusive games. So if you was interested from the beggining about Sony games you would buy PS3 long time ago just like I did.

    #40 12 months ago
  41. OlderGamer

    And that is why I targeted a PS4 this gen. Very nice. Well not the only reason, but I was figuring something like this would pop up.

    #41 12 months ago
  42. fihar

    Latency can be improved from the server side of things and isn’t the be all, end all that you suggested.

    I’m not sure how buying the hardware and the games yourself could actually be cheaper than having the entire catalogue available on your whims, not to mention across a variety of different devices that doesn’t even carry the Sony name.

    And no, I’m not talking about how this will change how I mainly play video games. This is basically Sony realizing that traditional console business model is not foolproof and therefore opening access to, eventually, their entirety of back catalogue to a whole range of devices.
    I mean, this is Sony we’re talking about. Even if they’re not financially healthy, they still have much more resource than either OnLive or Gaikai when they started out.

    Thinking that the service won’t be as performing as well as it should is fair but simply dismissing it as rubbish on that reason alone just reeks of cynicism.

    #42 12 months ago
  43. Asgaro

    (I did buy a PS3 Slim a few years ago (my first and only console ever btw) for their splendid exclusives. Props to Sony for getting me to buy one.
    But that’s only because the price had dropped quite a lot and multiplayer is free.)

    Now with the PS4 and the successors, you will have to pay to even play Multiplayer. They won’t see my money now when they release a PS4 Slim…
    So this streaming service would be nice.

    And Sony Online Entertainment has mostly Free To Play titles, at least their most recent ones: Planetside 2 (which I like a lot and is better than Battlefield), DC Universe and the upcoming Everquest 2.

    #43 12 months ago
  44. Legendaryboss

    Buy a PS3 or Buy a subscription on PS4? Which one is worst?

    #44 12 months ago
  45. Tormenter

    LMAO.. and you are all so fucking dense you will happily pay to repurchase your previous-gen games, simply because you were denied, FOR NO TECHNOLOGICAL REASON, the ability to play your previous purchases on the new hardware… seriously people, YOU are responsible for the greed you have allowed these companies to culivate.

    Maybe a tad forethought is required before any of you are allowed to handle cash in the future.

    #45 12 months ago
  46. Lahanas

    What disapoints me the most is that with services like this it really seems to be the end of the line for consoles :(

    #46 12 months ago
  47. Lloytron

    @32 I know, I own two OnLive devices. You are right, nobody cares about it now, but that’s not because the technology failed or the experience was poor, it failed due to lack of publisher support.

    With Sony behind this there will be a ton of games, and lots of AAA titles.

    The funny thing is if it works well then it could be fantastic. If it doesn’t, or is as problematic as some are saying ere (which is not the case in my personal experience) then what does it matter? Don’t use it.

    I find the vita PS remote play feature pretty horrible on my PS3. Nice try, but it failed. Perhaps this time they will get it right. And if they don’t, it will fail and nobody will use it or care. So why complain about them trying something innovative? And yes it is innovative even though it has failed previously. None of them took it as far as it can go.

    Some folks just like to whine. I say good luck to them, I hope it works.

    #47 12 months ago
  48. TheBlackHole


    I’m sorry Dave, but game changer this is not.

    Metaboli have done subscription gaming for some time, and gaikai demos and on live showed that streaming gaming is a long way from being a viable alternative.

    Don’t believe the hype – this is 5 years away from being any good. At least.

    #48 12 months ago
  49. Joe Musashi

    According to Sony, gamers who own disc or digital-based games will not have access to those games via PS Now free of charge.


    #49 12 months ago
  50. Tormenter


    Absolutely.. if this came with the PS subscription and VERY deeply discounted games it would be worth it and I would buy a PS4 tomorrow (despite not being a console gamer) but to pay for two different subcriptions AND (probably) full price for last gen games?

    No chance.

    #50 12 months ago
  51. Zackslacky

    200mb net. Bring it on;)

    #51 12 months ago
  52. xxxGamesMasterxxx

    What I want is to be able to pop in a PS1 disc into the PS4, have PSN verify that the PS1 disc is genuine, then be given access to a downloadable version of the PS1 game via PSN. Is that so hard to implement?

    #52 12 months ago
  53. Legendaryboss

    Hard? Not likely. Profitable? Why god no. Subscription model? Why yes.

    #53 12 months ago
  54. Hcw87

    So, bad latency and you have to buy the games you allready own AGAIN on top of a sub fee? Is that correct? Color me unimpressed.

    Why is this the second coming of Jesus? If i could stream ALL games i allready own on PS3 to my PS4 (or an unlimited amount of PS3 games for like 10$ a month) then this would be a good thing indeed. But there’s no mention of pricing anywhere.

    And how long until this launches in Europe?

    This reminds me of the Steambox announcement. Lots of buzz, but when you really think about it, it’s not that special until we know (alot) more.

    #54 12 months ago
  55. Lloytron

    @53 that would be nice, but unlikely, and not worth their while to build.

    #55 12 months ago
  56. freedoms_stain

    @55, “We want to offer you choice when it comes to how you want to access content on PS Now, so you will be able to rent by title for specific games you are interested in. We’ll also offer a subscription that will enable you to explore a range of titles.”


    #56 12 months ago
  57. Hcw87

    Need prices. There’s no way i’m going to pay 50$ a month for a sub for example.

    If they can match Onlive’s 10$ a month i’ll be all in.

    #57 12 months ago
  58. Phoenixblight


    It won’t be anywhere near that amount. It will be between 10-20$ a month.

    #58 12 months ago
  59. Panthro

    I would say $10-$20 is pretty near $10…

    #59 12 months ago
  60. Phoenixblight


    Was talking about his 50$ a month mark, obviously.

    #60 12 months ago
  61. Panthro

    Be more clear next time and we could have avoided this disaster.

    #61 12 months ago
  62. Phoenixblight


    Disaster? Puhlease

    #62 12 months ago
  63. Panthro


    Your only making it worse…
    Agghhwhww the comment section is crumbling.

    Ahhhhh irrelevancy that’s better.

    #63 12 months ago
  64. dizzygear

    “Unfortunately we’re not quite ready to confirm launch plans for PAL territories.”

    Read: Somewhere in 2016 and never in some countries. I mean this is the same SCEE that cant even be arsed to bring over Toro’s friend network.

    #64 12 months ago
  65. Ireland Michael

    @64 Because so many people are invested in Toro’s Friend Network.

    #65 12 months ago
  66. RicardoReverr

    my Aunty Maya recently got GMC Yukon SUV by working from the internet… Read More Here (Home tab more info)

    #66 12 months ago
  67. Obernox

    I don’t like this idea…..

    #67 12 months ago
  68. Tormenter


    As I’ve never bought a console, nor wanted one, the ‘repurchase’ isn’t an issue for me.. however I ABSOLUTELY will conceed that I think that people who WILL REPURCHASE are brain donor muppets who need to be kept very far away from any source of money.

    If it was BAD latency the service would NEVER have been considered even partially viable.

    Most lag problems for Gaikai and Onlive were caused by the individuals net connection.. agreed it’s still not absolutely perfect, but working properly the lag would only be an issue to those of the ocd persusion trying to play shooters… Yes, I’m saying that most peoples complaints about lag are copycat bullshit because it’s ‘the’ thing to be said… In general the people opening their mouths about it have never tried it, nor would they even notice the latency if they ever did.

    There is minor latency.. but it need not impact largely on your experience if you heed the need for good equipment.

    ..and NO, it’s hardly a second coming of anything.. but at the end of the day I would far prefer to buy/rent a library of games to be streamed at me in perpetuity, than buy some pos console for the console’s sake PLUS the ridiculously expensive and increasingly LESS worth it games …and then have to dump everything at the end of life a few years down the road (or heavens forbid having to buy multiple consoles because of the BS hardware they try to save money on). … If Sony are to survive it’s going to be through services like this (MS has NO CHANCE after this gen.. they’ll continue in the direction of a download only media box which will be a relative market failure bringing an end to their ‘BOX’ aspirations, because Sony will be the only ones to continue to concentrate mainly on games), it’s the only thing these days for non pc users that could provide even a modicum of purchase persistance.

    It’s certainly a better idea than yet another bloody console.

    #68 12 months ago
  69. dizzygear

    @65 Just because you have no interest in that app it does not mean noone does. Not to mention the Vita could use every piece of software it can get.

    Its Sony’s own damn software and its already translated so they have no fucking excuse to NOT release it in the PAL zone except pure disinterest for the PAL zones.

    #69 12 months ago
  70. Christopher Jack

    I wonder how many decades before Australia receives this. Still pissed about our country no longer getting FTTP internet. I know it shouldn’t be the tax payers responsibility to provide reliable internet but let’s face it; no private company is going to bother with us, all they care about are profit margins.

    In my opinion the internet is an essential service like water, roads, electricity & health care, sure not quite as important but essential in a modern society nevertheless & relying on private companies to deliver the essentials is never a great idea.

    #70 12 months ago

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