A day after new Sony Corp. chief executive Kenichiro Yoshida indicated the business model and market for Sony PlayStation Vue “remains uncertain,” Sony Interactive Entertainment chief John Kodera told reporters that the virtual MVPD platform is generating useful data and that there are no plans to shut it down.
With its PlayStation 4 console now five years old and approaching the end of its product life cycle, Sony finds itself transitioning its emphasis toward subscription services like Vue.
Online video game service PlayStation Plus, for example, has 34 million users across the globe paying $60 a month. And as Sony sets a three-year timeline to develop and launch its next console into a somewhat volatile market, it hopes to grow other successful subscription services to diversify its bottom line.
“We need to depart from the traditional way of looking at the console life cycle,” Kodera told The Wall Street Journal and reporters from several other outlets. “We’re no longer in a time when you can think just about the console or just about the network like they’re two different things.”
With Sony not releasing any subscriber metrics more than three years after launching its virtual pay-TV service, it remains unclear as to where Vue fits in that agenda.
Sony may be backing off what has been an aggressive agenda by most virtual MVPDs to sign local stations to retrans deals. Yesterday, the company announced that it will service 34 designated marketing areas with the national feed of the Fox network.
The new Fox live feed also includes Fox-branded cable channels including Fox News, FS1 and Fox Business. Vue also recently launched 193 Fox-owned regional sports networks on its service.
Meanwhile, Sony’s three-year-old vMVPD seems to be appreciated by the consumers using it. Releasing its annual survey results for subscription TV services this week, the American Customer Satisfaction Index found that Vue ranked ahead of all other vMVPDs and was second among all subscription streaming services to Netflix in customer satisfaction.