You may remember the videotape format wars of the 1980s, where VHS eventually triumphed over Betamax, making that one family on your street who couldn’t borrow videos from everyone else feel very silly. After the format wars ended, Betamax didn’t vanish. Players were still manufactured until 2002, and Sony was still making tapes until very recently. [More]
If you use PlayStation Network, Sony’s online platform for buying games and downloadable content for games, consider not keeping payment information on file and changing your password. It’s bad enough that stories of hacked accounts have surfaced in recent days, but these users report that Sony has given them no good options: they can eat hundreds of dollars’ worth of purchases, or lose access to their PSN accounts…forever. [More]
We don’t really do gift guides, but over the weekend Consumerist did bring you a wonderful list of creative ideas for non-terrible Father’s Day gifts. Meanwhile, over at Walmart, someone is doing their best to inspire customers to buy really terrible gifts for their dads. [More]
Best Buy wants to stage a comeback, coaxing customers back into its stores with price-matching and promises of top-notch service. Maybe the most appealing idea that the chain has had is to transform itself into an electronics food court, featuring mini-stores from individual manufacturers. Last year, this plan started with Samsung and Microsoft, and next up are mini home theater stores from Sony. [More]
Reader J. was upset to read our post about a reader whose new PlayStation 4 was dead on arrival, and to learn that he wasn’t the only one. She ordered one from Amazon for her kid for Christmas, and had planned to leave it sealed up and hidden away until December 25th. “What if it’s one of the duds?” she wrote. “Should I open it and test it now? I really didn’t want to give him an opened box…” [More]
Earlier this year, Sony discontinued their Minidisc format. We didn’t report on it at the time because the real news may have been that Minidisc players, the most portable music format of the ’90s, were still in production. The format never quite took off unless you like to record and bootleg concerts. [More]
Reader Walter went out on a retail archaeology expedition, also known as “going to Kmart.” Searching the electronics section, he thought he hadn’t found anything out of the ordinary until he turned the artifact over, and discovered a copyright date of 1996. At least! A true ancient electronic find! Or was it? [More]
Sony had this great deal offering $10 in store credit for every $50 that they spent in the PlayStation Network online store. Shane decided to give making purchases in the PSN store a try, because, hey, free money! Only in his attempt to avoid handing over his credit card info to Sony, he inadvertently didn’t fulfill one of the terms of the deal, and Sony won’t give him one of his $10 credits. [More]
When something has an expiration date and an end time isn’t specified, you sort of assume that the “day” ends at midnight where you are, or where the company is based. Most people do, anyway, and they shouldn’t. That’s what Howard learned when he tried to activate a free trial of PlayStation Plus, and he was a few hours too late. Not because he had forgotten to call before the offer expired, but because the day was already over. If you use Greenwich Mean Time. [More]
UPDATE: The press conference finally ended just after 8 p.m., with the revelation that the PS4 will be released “Holiday 2013.” No images of the actual console and alas, no pricing info. Dang. [More]
As someone who can still remember the unbridled glee that greeted whichever new gaming system arrived in our household of three brothers and one sister who wanted to be a part of it all, it just feels right to note the final journey of Sony’s Playstation 2. The company says the very last PS2 has shipped and there will be no more — zip, nada, nary a one — after delighting gamers everywhere for over 12 years. [More]
Trade-in programs that promise consumers a discount or cash for their old gadgets benefits everyone. The company–let’s say, for example–Sony–makes a sale. The old gadget gets a new life, or gets recycled. The customer gets a discount, and gets rid of their old device in a way that’s more convenient and safer than placing a Craigslist ad. In theory. That’s not working for Jeff, though. He sent in his old Vaio laptop to swap it for a gift card. He’d get double the listed trade-in value if he bought a new computer. Not bad. Assuming that they acknowledged receiving the computer, and that Sony determined the trade-in value to be more than $0.
Police in Snellville, GA, are trying to recover a pile of recently stolen guns and ammunition, but rather than offer the usual cash reward, cops are offering Sony PlayStation 3 video game consoles.
Lance says that he babied his Sony Vaio computer. He fed it electricity, kept it comfy, and left it docked into an LCD monitor all of the time. He didn’t take it everywhere or even toss it into a swimming pool. Yet after an odd negotiation with the world’s only onsite tech who refuses to make appointments, he learned that his version of reality wasn’t true. The computer had liquid corrosion, and Sony would only repair it if he paid almost 2/3 of the original purchase price in repair fees. Lance wants to know why the tech didn’t notice the corrosion until after he replaced the entire motherboard.
Jonathan’s sons sometimes want to buy downloadable content for their Playstation 3 games. He’s perfectly happy to buy this content for them, because he’s a nice dad like that. Unfortunately, his money is no good at Sony. He uses his credit card to add $10 to his virtual wallet. Then the same card won’t work immediately afterward. Neither will a different card.
With the next generation of gaming consoles set to debut during the next two years, rumors abound about whether or not digitally downloaded or cloud-stored games will replace the current disc-based standard. A new Wall Street Journal report claims that, for Sony at least, the day of the disc isn’t done yet.
Access to Amazon Instant Video’s streaming library has been a nice perk to signing up for Amazon Prime. But the service was never particularly useful to many customers who like to sit back on their couch and watch stuff on TV rather than stare at a computer screen. Now Amazon has cut a deal with the PS3 that draws it closer to competitors Netflix and Hulu Plus, which both stream on the Wii and Xbox 360 in addition to Sony’s console.
As we sifted through the mountain of nominations for this year’s Worst Company In America tournament, we noticed a trend of readers who cited companies’ mandatory binding arbitration clauses as a reason for nominating. And while it’s businesses like AT&T and Sony that have made all the headlines for effectively banning class action lawsuits, there are a lot of other WCIA contenders who are forcing customers into signing away their rights.