Sony and Nintendo change subscription service terms after investigation

Both Sony and Nintendo have updated their subscription services to include automatic renewal protection for users.

The UK-based Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) announced today that it has completed its investigation into both companies. The organization was concerned about PlayStation Plus and Nintendo Switch Online’s automatic renewal mechanisms, where users could get stuck paying for services they no longer want to use.

As such, Sony has agreed to contact customers about how to cancel their PlayStation Plus memberships if they expire and have not used the service for some time. Additionally, if users continue not to use their memberships, Sony will also stop processing future payments. Nintendo has also agreed to change the Switch Online service so that the subscription’s automatic renewal setting is no longer the default setting for customers.

“Today’s announcement therefore concludes our investigations into the online video game industry,” said Michael Grenfell, CMA’s Executive Director, in a press release. “Companies in other sectors that offer subscriptions that are automatically renewed should review their practices to ensure that they comply with the Consumer Protection Act.”

Back in January, the CMA conducted a similar survey with Microsoft and the Xbox. As a result, Microsoft now has to contact Xbox Live Gold and Game Pass customers who have not used the services for at least a year on how to cancel their subscriptions. If they are not used for another year, they are automatically canceled.