July 31, 2017 // 10:13 a.m.
Sony has confirmed that it is raising the price of PlayStation Plus, its subscription programme which enables PlayStation 4 online multiplayer access, cloud save storage, and offers of free-to-download games each month, with the annual membership fee jumping a quarter to £49.99 in the UK.
Launched in 2010, PlayStation Plus offers PlayStation 3, PlayStation 4, and PlayStation Vita owners free games - which remain accessible only so long as the subscription remains active - and discounts on other titles plus 10GB of remote storage for game saves. With the launch of the PlayStation 4, though, PlayStation Plus went from a nice-to-have to a near-mandatory requirement, with Sony choosing to lock online multiplayer for the majority of titles behind the subscription wall - meaning without paying for a PlayStation Plus subscription, you're relegated to a single-player experience.
In an email sent to users late last week, Sony confirmed that it is to hike the price of a PlayStation Plus membership from the end of August. Under the new pricing structure, the cost of an annual membership will increase by a quarter from its current £39.99 level to £49.99; the cost of a quarterly membership will increase by the same proportion, going from £14.99 to £19.99, while the fee for those choosing to play monthly is to go from £5.99 to £6.99.
Sony did not give a reason for the price increase, which is mirrored across Europe, but has advised members that buying memberships before the new pricing goes live on August 31st will stack with any remaining membership - allowing those who are tied in to the ecosystem to delay the price rise in exchange for advance payment.