Rumour: Sony to charge for â??PSN gold accountâ??

Sony to retrofit a premium subscription service similar to Xbox Live
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Sony is set to unveil a new premium online service that will cost the consumer £50 per year, rumours suggest.

The speculation implies that Sony is positioning itself to mirror the success of Microsoft’s Xbox Live Gold service, which charges for full access to popular online features.

News site VG247 claims that Sony will announce the scheme at this year’s E3 event. The website has a largely untarnished reputation in regards to industry rumours.

“Sony will announce a large-scale monetizing scheme for PSN at the LA show, but we’re assured nothing planned will impact the service’s current free aspects”, the website's report reads.

“A string of features will be revealed, apparently costing ‘less than £50 per year’,” it adds.

A Sony spokesperson has declined to comment.

If true, it would mean Sony would be retrofitting a premium service into what it currently offers for free – clearly a tricky situation for a platform holder that has only recently recovered from a two-year PR disaster.

To circumvent backlash, it’s thought that Sony will give all ‘gold’ subscribers a free PSN game per month, from a choice of “two to four” every month.

“If you work it out, PSN games cost an average of £6-9 each, so over a year you’re basically going to be breaking even,” said a purported source.

It’s also thought that PSN introduce a streaming music application, similar tin design to Spotify.