Electronic Arts has been known for pushing their subscription services on Xbox and PC gamers for quite some time now, such as EA Access and Origin Access, with varying degrees of success among gamers. According to PC Aficionado, though, it seems EA wants to take things further. The VP of EA’s investor relations, Chris Evenden, told the Deutsche Bank Technology Conference a few days ago that they are working toward a complete game streaming platform.
Evenden provided his reasoning for this move to the Deutsche Conference:
…I think it’s inevitable that the gaming entertainment world will move in much the same way that the music and video entertainment worlds have already moved, in the sense that people have moved from an ownership model to an access model. And you’ll see that in gaming, just as you’ve seen it with Spotify and Netflix in other media businesses.
The decision to only release games through a paid subscription service has of course been met with criticism by many fans online. On Reddit, there have been many comments predicting this to be a poor business decision on EA’s part, with one comment stating that EA seems determined to destroy their own company.
Much of the criticism seems to stem from the implication that gamers will have to keep paying a subscription fee to play games that they will never actually own, and may in fact pay many times more than what the game’s regular retail price would have been. Evenden, however, is convinced that the subscription service will actually be cheaper for consumers in the long run:
Right now if you want to play FIFA in the United States, it will cost you $460. You have to buy the game; you have to buy the console. In a streaming world, it could be $9.99 a month.
Evenden admits that the details haven’t been completely worked out, but he claims that for a game streaming service, all you’ll really need is a smart TV.