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Sony Details Japanese PlayStation Plus Service

Paid network service kicking off domestically on the 29th, simultaneous with the rest of the world.


Sony's paid "PlayStation Plus" network service is coming to Japan too. Following announcements made during its E3 press conference in Los Angeles Tuesday afternoon (Pacific time), Sony detailed its Japanese plans to the local media.

In Japan as well as the rest of the world, PlayStation Plus will kick of on June 29. The service will offer paid subscribers additional features on top of the current set of PSN features.

These features include:

Game Trials
Every month, Sony will make available 3 PS3 titles for free play over a 30 day period. You'll be able to play the games only for a certain amount of time. After a game's 30 day free play period has passed, you'll be able to carry over your save data and Trophies if you purchase the retail version.
Free Play
Every month, Sony will make available one PS3 or Game Archives game title for free. You'll be able to keep and play this game as long as you continue your PlayStation Plus account.
You'll get free avatars and custom themes designed specifically for PS Plus members.
Early Experience
You'll have advance access to demos, advance purchase privileges for some games, and invites to beta tests for online games. [dt]Discount[/dt]
Members will be able to obtain select PS3 and PSP game content at 20 to 50% discount. Three games will made available every month at this special pricing.
Automatic Downloads
The PS3 will automatically download game and firmware updates for you. For game updates, the system will download updates for three games simultaneously, and will also install the updates for you. Firmware updates require user agreement, so installation will not be automatic. You can set the system to start up automatically at specified times to search for updates. The system can also be made to shut down following the update.

Japan-based PS3 owners will be able to sign up for PlayStation Plus service at cost of ¥500 for 30 days or ¥5,000 for 365 days. The 90 day plan that was announced for North Ameirca and Europe will not be available in Japan.

For further details on PlayStation Plus, see the service's newly opened portal site. Sony will publish a schedule of content there on June 29.

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