PSN Bandwidth Charges May Explain No MME on PS3

Posted March 20th, 2009 at 2:24 pm


When the March Madness edition of NCAA Basketball 09 was announced many people wondered why it was exclusive to the Xbox 360. EA Sports didn’t make any comments as to the reasoning behind that. News that came out today though may provide the basis for why that decision was made.

MTV has an article about how publishers have become frustrated with the charging of bandwidth fees for both paid and free content on Sony’s Playstation Network. It appears that this is another (unrealized) benefit to the paid XBL subscriptions that now publishers are hesitant to provide content for PSN because they have to foot the bill for it.

Until October 1 2008, video game publishers who wanted to offer downloadable content on the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 didn’t have to worry about getting a bill from Microsoft and Sony. That situation changed with the PS3 on October 1 of last year, when Sony implemented a 16 cents per Gigabyte fee to publishers for paid and free downloadable content, according to publishing sources familiar with Sony’s policy. Game publishers are not happy about it.

So this probably explains why EA chose to bring a downloadable game such as NCAA MME only to the 360. It wasn’t expected to make the company a lot of money but instead intended to build the fanbase and increase awareness for the franchise going forward. Taking the hit on bandwidth costs may have made the prospects for a PS3 version uninviting. The article goes on in detail about the costs related to demos and how much Sony’s charging can really add up and affect the way publishers distribute content.