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Sony had itself a hell of a press conference tonight, and with it came several announcements regarding details surrounding the PS4.
The big news of the price came in, as Sony announced that they'd be charging $399 for the console. This undercuts Microsoft's previously announced $499 by a healthy margin and is really helping it win the hearts (and potential money) of gamers.
Also previously posted was what the console will look like (as posted before). Surprise surprise, it's a black box that will sit in your entertainment console and play games. It looks like a nice sleek device that will go well with my other devices connected to my TV.
On a less games-related note, Sony had the head of its entertainment division come out to announce that Sony would be launching a Video Unlimited Service, and it would be available on Playstation platforms upon launch. Specific titles that might be included which were called out during the event included TV shows Community and Breaking Bad. Sony's already-existing Music Unlimited service was announced to be available upon the launch of the PS4 as well.
Other video services coming to the PS4 include Redbox Instant (in what appears to be a partnership with Verizon), Flixster, and PPV events (although no particulars about what PPV events they could be were mentioned).
Back in the games world, Jack Tretton dropped the bomb that the PS4 would work fine with used games in contrast to Microsoft's recently announced policies. They even later posted a handy video about how to share games on the PS4.
Continuing on their assault of Microsoft's policies, Tretton also announced that the PS4 would require no online connection, and no 24 hour check in or authentication online. This means you can play offline as long as you want. This seemed to be a recurring theme with Sony's PS4 details, as they drove home the point of wanting to show they trust consumers and would not implement policies like the Xbox One.
For Sony's premium PlayStation Plus service, Sony announced existing memberships would carry over to PS4, so that the service will apply to all PlayStation platforms a user might own. Although the PS4 will not launch with a large stable of games, Sony still announced there will be an Instant Games Collection as exists with PS3 and Vita now. They even went as far as to announce that DriveClub will be a launch title for the Instant Games Collection on PS4. Sony also committed to adding a new title to the Instant Collection every month, including highly anticipated indie titles in that list. Unfortunately for gamers, it was also announced that the PS4 would require PS+ for online multiplayer. This last fact seemed to fly under the radar of many, but it is Sony's hope that PS+ otherwise continues to offer a great value for players.
Finally, it was announced that Sony is finally taking advantage of their purchase of Gaikai and that they would be working on what they called "Gaming Library All Access." It will be a streaming service to stream 'console-quality' games to PS3, PS4, and Vita (although the latter will not be available at launch). While Sony is still working on agreements with developers and publishers, expect the service to launch in 2014 in the US.
The big highlight was obviously the price point of $399, but what else did you like or dislike about these announcements? I'm not a fan of the PS+ requirements for online multiplayer, but I think the PS+ already offers a good value for users of the service, it doesn't make the multiplayer a big deal for me.
They've actually already said it's not backwards compatible. Like BAMJoe said, there will probably be some older titles through the Gaikai streaming service, but we're still too far out to know how many games that could involve.