The videogame industry’s campaign to storm your living room has heated up on an unlikely front: storage.
Sony on Monday said it will begin selling a new version of its Sony PlayStation 4 console that has one terabyte of storage.
The move came about two weeks after Microsoft said it was introducing a 1 TB model of the Xbox One, while still offering the 500 GB model at about $50 cheaper.
Sony’s post announcing the new model — the Ultimate Player Edition — gets right to the heart of the matter: fatter storage is meant to hold all of the games, extra quests and other add-on content that gamers can buy.
Downloadable content, also called DLC, is an increasingly lucrative part of the business but a controversial one. Gamers are generally happy to extend the life of their favorite games and characters through DLC. But spending extra dough on digital goods raises questions about whether developers are holding back content that could have been part of the initial product. PC and console games already run at about $60 to $65 a pop on average.
The extra storage space is an especially important sell for Sony, which wants to sign up people to PlayStation Plus, a monthly subscription that provides unlimited access to some two dozen games. It also lets players more easily save highlights of their gameplay to share with others — another hot trend in gaming.
Sony’s announcement appeared on the company’s blog for European customers, saying the new model will arrive in July. A separate news release in Japan said a 500 GB version that is lighter-weight and uses less power will arrive before the end of June before reaching other shores. The statements suggest that the PS4 console will keep the same $399 price. It isn’t clear whether the smaller model will remain for sale, perhaps at a lower price.