PlayStation Vue has become the third live-TV streaming service to announce price hikes over the last week alongside Dish Network’s Sling TV and AT&T’s DirecTV Now.
Starting July 24, Sony will charge new subscribers $5 more per month for all multi-channel PlayStation Vue plans, bringing the base price to $45 per month. The price hikes will apply to current subscribers starting next month.
Sony says it’s charging more to “keep pace with rising business costs,” which likely refers to the fees programmers charge for their channels. Last week, Sling TV CEO Warren Schlichting offered a similar explanation for raising the price of Sling Orange plans from $20 to $25 per month: Programming fees, he said, “only go one direction, and that’s up!”
In defending the price hikes, Sony pointed to a recent American Consumer Satisfaction Index survey that scored PlayStation Vue much higher than other live-TV streaming services. Still, Vue now carries a higher base price than Sling TV, DirecTV Now (which is also bumping prices up by $5 per month), Hulu with Live TV, YouTube TV, and Philo.
Absent some major leap forward in features or more compelling tie-ins for PlayStation users, the price hike is going to sting.