April 20th marked the discovery of a hacker attack that continues to plague Sony and their fans. At the time, Sony released daily updates via their official blog to alert the gaming community of the imminent return of the PSN and Qriocity services. Days quickly turned into weeks, and although they were able to restore some of the PlayStation’s online features, full functionality is still unavailable. Yesterday, however, a press release announced–yet again–that all of the console’s network services will be back by the end of the week.
After discovering an external intrusion in mid-April, Sony was quick to take down the network and even quicker to say when users could go back online. Originally, Patrick Seybold, Senior Director of Corporate Communications and Social Media, told fans that it, “may be a full day or two…to get the service completely back up and running”. After a week passed, Seybold apologized on behalf of the company and revealed their plan to have the PSN fully operational by the first week of May. They would also give a “Welcome Back” gift to users to reward their dedication. Two weeks since that announcement, most PlayStation users are now able to play games online due to a partial restoration. However, the PlayStation Store and their gift is still inaccessible.
Sony hopes to change this with a recent press release announcing the restoration of all online features. By the end of the week, Sony promises the following features will be back online:
• Full functionality on PlayStation®Store
• In-game commerce
• Ability to redeem vouchers and codes
• Full functionality on Music Unlimited powered by Qriocity
• Full functionality on Media Go
Kazuo Hirai, Sony’s Executive Deputy President, stated Sony was “conducting additional testing and further security verification of our commerce functions” and additional delays were necessary for customer protection.
Although I am hopeful that fan’s will finally be able to access the PSN Store, it is hard to believe that Sony will be able to fulfill this promise. After all, their history seems to hint that these press releases are comparable to P.R stunts to calm the community while Sony tries to bolster their security and find a way out of this mess. At the same time, it is important to note that a stronger, reliable security system is what users need more than anything, and if this requires more delays, so be it. Regardless of past history, let’s hope that all functionality will be restored by Friday, and consumers can access all the features that they expect from their console.
Links: Sony PlayStation