SCE technology platform boss Masayuki Chatani has told Nikkei that Sony will "face difficulties" if it continues to rely on the "sell-and forget model".
"Servers and the like have running costs... after we sell the hardware, though, we continue to sell products such as content and services," he said.
"We expect to see considerable growth in digital content, such as game download services, avatar items and the like.
"We can also accept payment in a growing number of ways.
"In addition to single-payment packaged software, there are also schemes like monthly fees or per-item charges. I think this variety of payment methods will bring about a diverse range of playing methods, too."