After Microsoft and Apple, Sony is preparing to launch its PlayStation Now cloud gaming service on mobile phones, a confidential document reveals.
As such, the documents noted that “The service would stream over 450 PS3 games at first, and follow up with PS4 titles.”
Apple mentioned the PlayStation Now expansion as it was in the early stages of developing Apple Arcade, its answer to Sony’s service as well as Xbox Game Pass. While Arcade didn’t launch until 2019 and still doesn’t include streaming, Apple saw PlayStation Now as indicative of a broader shift toward gaming subscriptions.
Given that those reports are accurate, it’s unclear why Sony still isn’t streaming games to smartphone owners. A hybrid of PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus is reportedly due in spring 2022, but the relevant rumor didn’t make mention of mobile access.
In addition, there may have been factors that contributed to that decision, including that Sony did not want to test Apple policies by blocking cloud gaming apps. As well as having familiar technical challenges such as adapting gamepad-focused titles to touchscreens or ensuring reliable streams on cellular connections.
Initially, the service streamed PS2 and PS3 games to smart TVs, Blu-ray players, and the PS3 and PS Vita, but cut off all those original platforms in late 2017 to focus on the PlayStation 4 and Windows PC instead. While it recently added 1080p streaming and a PS5 client, it’s never been offered on Android, iOS, or Mac.
A small number of PS4 games launched on PlayStation Now in July 2017, but the service is “only PS3 games right now,” suggesting Apple got tipped off about more than just the move to mobile.