Sony is piloting a video subscription service with unlimited streaming of certain television shows and movies, as an add-on to the existing PlayStation Plus service. Sony wasn’t exactly ready to announce the Video Pass program yet — but someone at the company accidentally uploaded Sony’s Polish site and the internet took notice.
The Sony Poland site briefly updated Wednesday to include a logo for “PlayStation Plus Video Pass,” along with a brief message about the program. As translated by Video Games Chronicle (which also first spotted the leak):
A new benefit available for a limited time on PlayStation Plus…PS Plus Video Pass is a trail service active 22.04.21 - 22.04.22. The subscription benefit is available to PS Plus users in Poland.”
Sony has since confirmed that it will indeed be testing Video Pass in Poland for the next year. It’ll be entirely free for the trial period and will include 15 movies and six TV shows, all owned by Sony Pictures.
Movies and TV are one of Sony’s greatest assets in relation to other major gaming companies like Microsoft and Nintendo. A video-streaming pass could be the perfect way for the company to leverage this library and better compete with offerings like Xbox Game Pass.
A limited library, for now — For this pilot program, PS Plus Video Pass isn’t exactly going to be a Netflix-like experience. The catalogue here is very limited, with a grand total of 21 titles for unlimited viewing.
At launch, the program will include the following movies:
- Jumanji: The Next Level
- Zombieland 2: Double Tap
- Charlie's Angels (2019)
- Venom (2018)
- The Equalizer 2
- Baby Driver
- Blade Runner 2049
- Underworld: Blood Wars
- Sausage Party
- Inferno (2016)
- American Hustle
- This is the End
- Bad Boys (1995)
And the following TV shows:
- Future Man
- Deadly Class
- Lost Girl
Sony says more titles will be added every three months until the trial has concluded.
Game Pass can’t compete — Sony owns a library of entertainment content that is absolutely massive. We’re talking one of the largest collections of TV and movies in existence, including the company’s recent acquisition of the Crunchyroll network.
If Sony were to add streaming access to even a fraction of that catalogue for free as part of a PlayStation Plus subscription, it would undoubtedly be a huge draw-in for new subscribers. That’s a force against which Microsoft offence would be nearly nonexistent.
Microsoft has found its expanded Game Pass offerings to be extremely popular amongst gamers and very profitable for the company, too. The PlayStation network doesn’t have a robust game-streaming subscription to compete — but a free, unlimited video service could do just that.
Sony hasn’t confirmed any plans to bring Video Pass to other territories. If Poland’s test goes well, it would be surprising if it didn’t come to PlayStations around the world.