Sony has revealed that it won't charge customers if they want to access party chat functions and third-party apps on the PlayStation 4. Unlike Microsoft, which requires Xbox 360 and future Xbox One owners to sign up to Xbox Live Gold, Eurogamer reports that Sony will provide free access to core services, as well as apps like Netflix and Hulu. Online multiplayer will still require a PlayStation Plus subscription, but it will not apply to free-to-play games, which is another thing that Microsoft charges for.
In its PS4 Q&A video, Sony confirmed it has also expanded PlayStation 4 friend lists to allow for up to 2,000 friends, doubling Microsoft's limit on the Xbox One. Given its recent policy reversals, including the opening of the Xbox One's online store allowing independent developers to self publish games, Microsoft may be forced to change its rules once again if it wants to stop fans from defecting to its rival's next-gen console.