Users find PlayStation Network movie downloads are one-time only

A PlayStation 3 owner has brought to attention Sony's policies regarding movies purchased from the PlayStation Network: if one is deleted, it is rather difficult to obtain again.

According to Sony's licensing agreement: "Content cannot be redownloaded once it has been downloaded to either a PLAYSTATION 3 or PSP system. Content cannot be redownloaded once it has been downloaded to either a PLAYSTATION 3 or PSP system."

One PS3 network user posted his story on the official PlayStation message board. As he describes, he deleted movies he had downloaded to free up space on his hard drive, but when he tried to re-download them, he found that he could not.

In order to get the content back, a user has to go through SCEA customer service to be given courtesy access to content labeled "downloaded" on his downloads list. This can be done only once.

Since other consoles do not offer movie purchases, the closest PlayStation Network parallel that can be drawn with respect to Nintendo's Wii is its downloadable WiiWare and Virtual Console content, which Nintendo allows to be deleted and re-downloaded unlimited times. Of course, with only a 512 MB (yes, that's an "M") hard drive, to not have that feature would be unacceptable. Likewise, content downloaded from Microsoft's Xbox Live Arcade -- even titles that have been de-listed -- are at the user's disposal forever. The Xbox 360 only features Netflix-powered movie rentals.

Where the PlayStation Network's 24-hour movie rental system has generally been met with praise, the single download rule for movie purchases is a harsh deterrent. Users on the message board shared the opinion that the console has "what it needs" elsewhere, with an adequate rental system, and the ability to play DVDs and Blu-ray discs, as well as stream media from a home server or access content remotely via the system's browser and Winamp Remote.

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