Update (3/27 5:30pm): Just in time for the Mad Men season premiere, PlatStation Vue has added the AMC family of networks to its service. This includes AMC, WEtv, IFC, and Sundance. The former of which are included in all packages, while the latter can be found in the Core and Elite packages.
It has been a big week for internet television. Sling TV made its way to the Xbox One and Apple appears closer than ever to providing its own streaming television service. We know what Sling has to offer, while Apple is still negotiating.
Today, Sony has released its PlayStation Vue streaming television service in select cities across the United States. While it offers a much more comprehensive list of channels than Sling TV, there are a few reasons to think twice before diving in.
Chicago, New York and Philadelphia are the lucky cities that get day one access to Sony’s no-contract PlayStation Vue. Starting at $49.99 and increasing by $10 for the Core tier and another $10 for Elite, this cable alternative has a few standout features. Most notably, cloud DVR capabilities and some local channels in the previously mentioned markets. These affiliate channels include CBS, FOX and NBC with ABC being the lone holdout.
The Access package from PlayStation Vue has over 50 channels, including ESPN, TBS, TNT, Fox Sports and more. The second tier $59.99 Core package adds a few regional channels, with the top $69.99 Elite bringing in “lifestyle” channels such as Cooking Channel, CNBC World and a few others. At launch, subscribers will be able to watch on Sony’s PlayStation 4 and 3 consoles, with iPad support coming. One major let down for Sony’s PlayStation Vue is its 720p resolution, we would expect to see full 1080p here, which is the industry standard at this point.
So how does it stack up to the competitors? Without knowing much about Apple’s rumored service, we’ll have to stick to Sling TV for comparison sake. The Vue’s cloud DVR and local channels are notable advantages over Sling, as well as the ability to offer three simultaneous streams instead of one. Sling certainly holds an advantage when it comes to devices, with Roku, Xbox One, Chromecast, iOS and Android support.
However, Vue’s pricing is more in line with traditional cable offerings, especially once you consider the required internet package. If you are going to pay $50 for this service, plus an additional $70 for internet, are you really saving money? In that instance it’s more like opting for a competing service versus a cord cutting alternative. Sling TV’s price, multi-device viewing and package flexibility make it a more forward thinking alternative to cable at this time.
With poor customer service experiences abounding, it’s no surprise that more consumers are looking for alternatives to the big guys. Drop us a comment below and let us know if you’re going to make the jump to an internet television service or sticking with cable.
PlayStation Vue Launches Today in Chicago, NYC, Philadelphia
Posted by Eric Lempel on Mar 18, 2015 // VP, Sony Network Entertainment
I am excited to announce that PlayStation Vue has officially launched today in Chicago, New York City, and Philadelphia on PS4 and PS3. PlayStation Vue is a new service that combines live and on-demand TV, and a cloud based DVR to stream the best TV shows, movies and sports directly to your console without a cable or satellite subscription.
We set out to build this revolutionary product with our community of gamers in mind. This latest addition to PlayStation Network lets you experience TV the way you have always wanted it. Your favorite shows and channels will always be front and center whenever you start PlayStation Vue. When you are looking for something new and exciting to watch, powerful discovery tools will help you filter thousands of shows in just moments, so you can search less and watch more. The cloud based DVR lets you save your favorite shows with no programming conflicts and store recorded episodes for up to 28 days.
PlayStation Vue is initially available on PS4 and PS3 in Chicago, New York City, and Philadelphia. We are working hard to deliver PlayStation Vue to more cities soon. We are also bringing PlayStation Vue to iPad in the near future.
If you are ready to start Vueing, go to PlayStation Store on your console or visit our website for more details and ongoing updates.