Some owners of Sony PlayStation 3 can now claim money from a national class-action lawsuit that was filed against the electronics giant, according to a report by Aaron Mamiit in Tech Times.
The lawsuit has been in the works since 2010 when Sony removed the OtherOS feature from the video game platform during a routine update. That feature had allowed users to reserve part of the space on the hard drives of so-called PlayStation 3 “fat” consoles so that they could install the Linux operating system on it, Mamiit explains.
The company attributed its decision to pull the feature to “security concerns.”
Two different classifications of Sony customers are eligible to claim money as part of the PlayStation 3 class action lawsuit.
“The first type is termed Consumer Class A, and this includes all customers in the United States who bought the Fat PlayStation 3 within the given dates of 2006 and 2010 and used the OtherOS feature to install a Linux OS on the video game console,” Mamiit explains. “The second type of customer, named Consumer Class B, includes all such customers but who did not use the OtherOS feature.”
Did you buy a PHAT PS3 like I did? If so you’re able to get a wicked $9. https://t.co/TVADAFYWDc
— Game Sack (@GameSack) October 15, 2016
To file a claim for your share of the class-action lawsuit, you must fill out an online form created as part of the settlement. Customers who purchased a fat PlayStation 3 prior to 2010 need to submit “a complete and valid” claim form in order to receive a payment as part of the settlement.
Those who fall under the Consumer Class A category should receive a payment of $55 each. Those in Consumer Class B will receive a payment of only $9 each.
“Only one claim can be submitted per console, with the claim forms also required to include the proof of purchase for the PlayStation 3 and the PlayStation Network ID, which was used on the console before April 1, 2010,” the Tech Times article explains. “In addition, Consumer Class A customers are required to prove that they did indeed use the OtherOS feature on their PlayStation 3.”
According to PC Magazine, users could have kept the “Other OS” feature intact and continued running Linux on their console if they chose not to update the system. Opting out of the upgrade, however, would disable access to the PlayStation Network.
While Sony maintained that the decision was security-related and “permissible under its terms of service,” angry PlayStation 3 users countered that the move was “just an anti-piracy play,” PC Magazine reports.
Many users prefer the Linux operating system because it is “much quicker, on the whole,” according to Adam Shepherd at IT Pro.
“The OS itself is less demanding, and many distros sacrifice any visual bells and whistles to ensure that performance is the absolute best it can be,” Shepherd explains. “Opting for one of these builds can be an excellent way to bring an ailing older laptop back up to its former speed.”
— Console GameMag (@ConsoleGameMag) September 30, 2016
The streamlined structure of Linux, and the subsequent increases in speed and performance it brings to users, makes it perfect for running programs, like video games, that require a lot of data. The fact that the PlayStation 3 was supposed to be compatible with Linux no doubt influenced some gamers to choose it over a competing system.
A California judge originally dismissed the case in 2011, according to PC Magazine, but it was revived during the appeal process in 2014.
“Sony and the plaintiffs finally reached a settlement earlier this year,” writes PC Magazine. “The tech giant has agreed to pay PS3 users while maintaining that it didn’t do anything wrong.”
The PlayStation 3 was succeeded by the PlayStation 4 in 2013.
The deadline to submit a claim to receive payment from Sony through the PlayStation 3 class-action lawsuit is December 7.
[Featured Image by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images]