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Why Is PlayStation Vue Closing Down? [Updated]

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Update 02/2020: PlayStation Vue has closed.


Yes, PlayStation Vue is closing down.

If you are an existing subscriber then you will want to know why this is happening, what’s going to happen in the meantime, and what you need to do next.

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In this article we’ll explain all of these points and in that order. However, if you are looking for answers to a specific question you can jump to a section using the links below.

When is PlayStation Vue closing?

Sony has confirmed PlayStation Vue will close permanently on January 30, 2020.

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Why is PlayStation Vue closing?

There’s probably multiple reasons why PlayStation Vue is closing. However, in the original announcement the company highlighted some of those reasons.

The “highly competitive pay TV industry

Sony is only one of many live TV streaming services you can subscribe to today.

What’s more, all of those live TV streaming services are only a small part of the TV industry. There’s traditional TV providers like Comcast and DIRECTV, and then there’s all the on-demand streaming services like Hulu and Netflix.

On top of all of this, there’s the TV networks themselves. While these companies have traditionally licensed their channels and content to services like PlayStation Vue, the more recent trend is to offer their channels and content directly to the public.

Therefore, every service is now vying for your attention, subscription and dollars. This has also led to an escalation in prices for channels and content. Networks and content owners either want to keep their channels and content for their own services or increase the licensing price to offset against things like higher production costs, a reduction in ad revenue, and so on.

In Sony’s case in particular, video and TV streaming is not even the company’s main focus. Which brings us to another of the reasons.

Sony wants to resume a focus on gaming

Sony says that in life after PlayStation Vue it wants to focus on its “core gaming business.” Sony does have a lot of business arms in its portfolio, although most consumers are likely to be familiar with the PlayStation gaming brand.

In fact, this brand is so strong the company named its live TV streaming service after its gaming business. This is in spite of users not actually needing a PlayStation gaming console to stream PlayStation Vue.

This may actually have been one of the reasons why the service has struggled compared to others. The adopting of the PlayStation name links the service to the company’s gaming ecosystem.

Even if that linking is only in name, it could have been the case that many assumed they needed to be more involved with PlayStation to use the service.

What’s happening in the meantime?

According to Sony, not a lot. Yes, Sony has confirmed PlayStation Vue will come to an end on January 30, 2020. However, the company says it will continue business as normal between now and then.

If you are already a subscriber to the service then it is presumed nothing will change in the meantime. Sony says you can continue to use the service as you did, and that your plan will remain the same.

Note: While Sony says all this, it stands to reason there might be some changes between now and then. For example, some channels may be blacked out due to the termination of any carriage deals before the January 30, 2020 end date. We will update this post if and when that happens.

When is my last PlayStation Vue bill?

According to Sony, the company will bill existing subscribers for the last time in December, 2019.

The exact date any individual subscriber will pay will depend on their unique billing cycle. However it does seem that once that last December payment is made subscribers will continue to have access to the service until the close date.

This could mean that if you usually pay in early December, you might retain PlayStation Vue access all the way through until the end of January while only paying for one month.

Considering PlayStation Vue is a service that’s billed monthly, all existing subscribers should expect their last payment to be made on December 30, 2019, at the very latest.

I’m new. Can I start a new subscription?

Technically, yes. As of right now PlayStation Vue is still accepting new subscribers. In fact, you can still take advantage of the service’s free trial.

PlayStation Vue offers a 5-day free trial.

However, the company has recently updated the PlayStation Vue welcome page with a message that confirms it does plan to end the option to subscribe and the free trial soon.

Sony has not provided an exact date as to when this will happen. We will update this article as and when Sony confirms the end of new subscriptions and the free trial.

Update Nov. 11: PlayStation Vue is no longer accepting new subscribers. You can no longer sign up to the service or take advantage of the free trial.

What are the alternatives to PlayStation Vue?

As Sony mentioned in its closure announcement, the pay TV industry is highly competitive. This includes the live TV streaming section of the market.

If you are an existing PlayStation Vue subscriber, or had planned to give the service a try, you will now need to consider the alternatives.

Here are the most popular and similar live TV streaming services.

  • AT&T TV NOW
  • fuboTV
  • Hulu + Live TV
  • Philo
  • Sling TV
  • WatchTV
  • YouTube TV

All of these services provide access to live TV over the internet. They do all differ a little in terms of the channel selection. As an example you check out our AT&T TV NOW vs YouTube TV channel guide to see how the channel lineups differ for those two services.

Likewise, they all also differ a little on price. Some of them are priced very similar to PlayStation Vue while others are even cheaper. You can see how they compare on price by checking out our constantly updated live TV streaming price and deals guide.

Update: PlayStation Vue closed.

As planned, PlayStation Vue closed down on January 30, 2020.

Prior to the closure, the YouTube TV app gained PlayStation 4 support. Those who prefer to access live TV streaming from a PlayStation 4 can only do so through YouTube TV.

Otherwise, any of the other live TV streaming services might be worth considering.

John Finn

By John Finn

John started Streaming Clarity to help consumers navigate the live TV streaming and subscription service landscape. John has been writing about technology and TV-related services and devices since 2014 and believes the best streaming approach is to bounce between services as needed. Contact John via email at john@streamingclarity.com or on Twitter

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