PlayStation Plus vs. PlayStation Now: Which online subscription service is right for you

PS5 Playstation 5 controller
Both PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus are available on PS4 and PS5. YELIM LEE/AFP via Getty Images

Table of Contents: Masthead Sticky

  • PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus are subscription plans you can buy to get free games on your PlayStation.
  • PlayStation Now is a cloud gaming service that lets you stream hundreds of games to your console or PC.
  • PlayStation Plus gives you online multiplayer, free monthly games, and discounts on others – but only on your console.
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It’s more than possible to own a PS4 or PS5 without any subscriptions, and play games normally. But if you want online multiplayer, or a collection of free games, you’ll want to sign up for either PlayStation Plus or PlayStation Now.

These two subscription services have different features and very different prices. But they’ll both give you a massive selection of games to choose from.

Here are PlayStation Now and PlayStation Plus’ most important features, along with how much you’ll pay for each.

How much PlayStation Plus costs and what it offers

PlayStation Plus
A PlayStation Plus subscription unlocks online multiplayer, along with other goodies. Sony

While you can connect your PlayStation to the internet without a subscription – and even stream apps like Netflix or Hulu – most of the valuable features are locked behind PlayStation Plus.

This includes the ability to play multiplayer games online, access to free games each month – which, once downloaded, you can continue to play for as long as you have a subscription – and exclusive early access to game demos and betas.

PlayStation Plus also gives you 100GB of online storage for saved game files. This means that even if your PlayStation breaks, your save data is safe.

There are several different subscription options for PlayStation Plus:

  • A 12-month subscription costs $US59.99 ($AU82) (or $US4.99 ($AU7) per month)
  • A 3-month subscription costs $US24.99 ($AU34) ($US8.33 ($AU11) per month)
  • A one-month subscription costs $US9.99 ($AU14).

There’s also a 14-day free trial available if you’ve never used PlayStation Plus before.

How much PlayStation Now costs, and what it offers

PlayStation Now
With PlayStation Now you can stream and play games on your computer or PlayStation. Sony

PlayStation Now is a very different kind of service.

While the main selling point of PlayStation Plus is multiplayer gaming, you can think of PlayStation Now as more of a Netflix for games – it’s a subscription-based streaming service that lets you play any number of games from Sony’s substantial library of PlayStation titles, including older PlayStation consoles, for a single monthly price.

If the games you choose on Now have online multiplayer, you’ll be able to play online too, even if you don’t have Plus.

You can stream the games to your PS4, PS5, or Windows PC.

There are several different subscription options for PlayStation Now:

  • A 12-month subscription costs $US59.99 ($AU82) (which is $US4.99 ($AU7) per month)
  • A 3-month subscription costs $US24.99 ($AU34) ($US8.33 ($AU11) per month)
  • A one-month subscription costs $US9.99 ($AU14).

If you’ve never used PlayStation Now before, there’s also a weeklong free trial.

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