Nintendo, PlayStation, and Xbox's online services are all currently under investigation by UK govt

Xbox-One-PS4-Switch-951258.jpg

The big three gaming titans, Microsoft, Sony, and Nintendo, are currently under scrutiny of the UK's Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) branch, with an investigation having been opened in regards to the policies of their online services. According to the official press release, the CMA believes that the three aforementioned companies must be investigated to ensure that UK consumers are protected, and that the subscription services are legal within the country. Though there is no proof at this time that any laws have been broken, Nintendo, Sony, and Microsoft are required to respond to the UK government with information on their respective contracts, so that the CMA can research that the terms are fair. What they appear to be looking for are incidents where customers have had trouble cancelling the services, dealt with numerous price hikes, or were forced into having to turn on auto-renew. Once the investigation concludes, a decision will be made, and either nothing will occur, or the offending party will have action taken against them.


The CMA has written to Nintendo Switch, PlayStation and Xbox requesting information about their online gaming contracts to help better understand their practices. It is also calling on customers who use these services to get in touch with the CMA and share their experiences in order to assist the investigation, which will examine several issues, including:

  • are the contract terms unfair? - do the companies’ terms give them wide discretion to change the quality of the deal, for example, by reducing the number of games included or increasing the price?

  • how easy it is to cancel or obtain a refund? - are there any factors that make it difficult for people to cancel their contract or get their money back?

  • how fair is the auto-renewal process? - are customers clearly told that their membership will be rolled over, are they regularly reminded that they are on a roll-over contract before further payments are taken, and is auto-renewal set as the default option?


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Deleted User

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lol
Have you heard of server costs?
The amount is debatable though. :)
do you really think nintendo, sony and microsoft need to worry about server costs? if they were smaller companies then sure, but they're all multi million dollar corporations

also lmao, nintendo, what servers?

and why can PC gaming sustain itself without these ridiculous fees? are there not server costs for PC games as well?
 
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Rune

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I think its fair, as long as they're throwing in free games with the service. I think Nintendo has it right with their pricing and the free stuff they give you for it.
I guess Sony and Microsoft charge what they do because people are still willing to pay for it.
 
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DANTENDO

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I think its fair, as long as they're throwing in free games with the service. I think Nintendo has it right with their pricing and the free stuff they give you for it.
I guess Sony and Microsoft charge what they do because people are still willing to pay for it.
Sonys psn plus is always a bargain
 

thekarter104

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paying a subscription to play online should be illegal

This, so much this. I went for 3 months online on the Xbox One. Some real life stuff came up not really having time to play.
Wasted money for nothing. Since then, I'm actually against paying for online. On the other hand ofcourse I understand it costs money for them to keep the servers up and running, but jeez...
 

DANTENDO

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i hate to say it but PSN is shit. i wish we can pick our games for free each month... also that censorship bull shit don't get my ranting on that.
Would you be doing this if you was the Head of Sony I'll doubt it
 

Cygen

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With some luck Sony has to make their PS+ cheaper.
Increased prices were one thing when they still offered up to 6 (sometimes good but mostly bad) extra goodies on top of Online Features but now that they threw away like 60% of the extra features they are kinda the only one who is really overpriced if you just want Online Play. I still Wish each of the 3 Big Companys would offer an Option to pay for "just" Online play without free games. Okay, in Nintendos case I think they kinda already have the best price for just Online play but I have no clue how good it is...
 

pohaxsf

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i think britain is far better than greece.. ninty has shit.. i i got a game. i don't want it.. no refund policy.. and you need to use the game.. insane
 

Wombleton

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I got banned from PSN, for doing a credit card charge-back after i had an automatic renewal come out 6 months after i had sold my playstation 4. I Spent more then an hour on the phone with customer services who told me they couldn't refund me even though they could see online i hadn't been using the service, they couldnt even turn the automatic renewal off from there end(well that what he told me).
 

pohaxsf

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I got banned from PSN, for doing a credit card charge-back after i had an automatic renewal come out 6 months after i had sold my playstation 4. I Spent more then an hour on the phone with customer services who told me they couldn't refund me even though they could see online i hadn't been using the service, they couldnt even turn the automatic renewal off from there end(well that what he told me).
they are insane.. there is no way they cannot.. i guess the new owner notified u .
 

Manurocker95

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do you really think nintendo, sony and microsoft need to worry about server costs? if they were smaller companies then sure, but they're all multi million dollar corporations

also lmao, nintendo, what servers?

and why can PC gaming sustain itself without these ridiculous fees? are there not server costs for PC games as well?
They need to worry about them as they have millions of players everyday. PC games sustain themselves because someone pay for them. Epic offers his servers for free on Unreal engine. Steam offers his own servers too. Blizzard’s servers cost 13 bucks per month (with wow’s subscription). League of Legends is free but they gain A LOT of money by selling skins.

And yeah, Nintendo’s servers suck.
 
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Tom Bombadildo

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do you really think nintendo, sony and microsoft need to worry about server costs? if they were smaller companies then sure, but they're all multi million dollar corporations

also lmao, nintendo, what servers?

and why can PC gaming sustain itself without these ridiculous fees? are there not server costs for PC games as well?
What does being a multi million dollar company have to do with anything? Servers still cost money to use, why the fuck would any business want to pay for that out of their own pocket? I mean, you are aware businesses are out here to, y'know, make money? It's exactly why Nintendo started their paid online, because they realized that gosh, paying for servers out of their own pocket is fucking dumb, so let's get consumers to do it!

And PC gaming doesn't have paid online because PC gaming is an extremely fractured ecosystem. It'd be impossible to develop any kind of profitable paid online system with such a fractured market, with multiple storefronts and marketplaces around to buy games from, or even when some random dude can just setup a server themselves and host it for whomever they want (whether legitimately or not). That's why online digital marketplaces like Steam take a bigger cut for hosting games on their marketplace, because they're well aware of this fact after Microsoft completely fucked up with GFWL on PC in 2007 or whatever, so they opt to push the costs to the publishers/devs instead of the users (which is finally starting to have consequences).

Consoles, on the other hand, are a closed ecosystem, therefore Sony/N/MS have to create and maintain their own online service because the average Joe can't do it themselves. Doing so costs money, so of fucking course they're going to charge for it. Is it a shit way to do it? Of course, every console should have free online by default. Is there a better way to do it? Not without it being shit, or still costing money. See Nintendo's utterly abysmal online platforms since they started going online (which they still haven't even gotten right).
 
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