PS3 owners who are also users of Playstation Home can now watch films and TV shows completely for free from right within the PSN’s virtual world thanks to Sony teaming up with Crackle. And UStream is set to follow along shortly.
Playstation Home and Crackle
Playstation Home is a free social network/virtual world/gaming hub which is available to all PS3 owners signed up to the Playstation Network. You create an avatar, enter Home, and can then explore, chat, shop, and generally mess around at your leisure. And all for free.
Crackle is a website offering free movies and TV shows, as well as original content. There’s a wide range of films available on the site, as well as trailers and clips. They’re all of a classic nature, it’s fair to say, as in you’re not going to be able to watch Avatar or The Dark Knight on there for quite some time, but there is little cause for complaint when it’s all free.
Together At Last
Playstation Home and Crackle have teamed up, with Crackle now being available from within Home. Any movie or TV show that can be watched on the site can now be watched in Home. But the added benefit, if you see count it as that, is being able to watch content with friends.
This is social viewing, a trend which we discussed just yesterday in light of Chill adding Hulu to its line-up. In various spaces in Home friends can now gather to watch a video together. This is something that has been offered on Xbox Live for some time, but that isn’t entirely free.
I’m a regular user of Playstation Home myself, and have watched movie trailers and game demos on the screens dotted around the place. It all works exceedingly well, with little stutter or skipping. Social viewing isn’t for me, but having the option in Home is certainly a bonus.
Crackle is clearly just the start for Home. Ustream will be added in December alongside Internet radio streams. To this point the Xbox 360 has been the bigger player when it comes to online video on consoles, but Sony clearly wants to put the PS3 back in the game. This is certainly a promising start.