The publication of a recent patent application suggests that Sony is looking to block people from playing used games on upcoming consoles.
Rumors that game companies are looking for a way to crack down on second-hand games is nothing new. However, this tech patent application suggests Sony is taking steps to prevent people from playing used titles. According to Kotaku, the technology could be applied to the upcoming Playstation 4.
Sony Computer Entertainment Japan, which filed the application six months ago, would attempt to restrict game usage through the employment of an RF tags. Once the game has been linked to a particular console, it cannot be used on another system. In short, purchasing used video games could become a thing of the past.
The Sony tech patent application explains:
“Recent years have seen widespread use of terminal apparatuses [game consoles], each provided with a drive for reading data from a recording medium, which processes electronic content stored in the recording media.
“A technology of digital rights management (DRM) is introduced to prevent the electronic content from being used unlimitedly. Typically, DRM is a technology for the prevention of the unlimited copy of electronic content. To this end, the inventor recognized that there are cases where it is difficult to suitably restrict the use of electronic content, stored in the recording medium like DVD and commercially traded.”
According to The Escapist, Sony hasn’t publicly stated whether or not such technology will be incorporated into the Playstation 4. The website explains that it’s likely the company decided to patent the tech in case another entity tries to develop the same thing.
Sony Computer Entertainment America head Jack Tretton previously stated the company was opposed to blocking used games from its consoles. Similar rumors were going around when the Playstation 3 first debuted in 2006.
What do you think about the Sony patent that could prevent people from playing used games?