Sony rules out OtherOS refunds

No refunds will be issued to those aggrieved by Sony’s recent move to cut the OtherOS functionality from the machine in its most recent firmware update.

The statement from Sony follows a recent report of a consumer who was able to procure a partial refund for his console from Amazon. He argued that the machine was no longer fit for purpose” as advertised functionality was no longer included.

Console owners are free to ignore the update and retain the OtherOS functionality (which allows the likes of Linux to be installed and run) but that choice comes at a price – they will no longer be able to access PSN, use in-game chat or watch Blu-ray movies.

We do understand the frustration a small number of consumers may feel at SCE’s decision to provide an upgrade to the firmware to disable the Linux operating system but we refute any suggestion that this action is in any way a contravention of the terms of Sale of Goods Act,” SCE UK’s David Wilson told ThinkQ.

The console packaging and the in-box manual for the console do not refer to the use of Linux on the console. Rather, the console packaging states that the product’s design and specifications are subject to change without notice and that the system software within the console is subject to a limited licence between SCE and the consumer, and this licence permits SCE to update the system software and services offered from time to time.

The provision in the Sale of Goods Act which requires an item to be fit for a purpose made known by the consumer to the retailer prior to purchase and confirmed by the retailer applies only to the contract between the retailer and the consumer.

The decision by Amazon to give a consumer a partial refund is clearly between Amazon and the consumer, but we do not expect the decision to have a legal basis and we have no plans to compensate retailers.”

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