The companies agreed to new measures after an investigation by the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA), a UK regulatory body.
From now on, Sony will contact PlayStation Plus users who haven’t used the service in a long time, explaining how to cancel the subscription.
If they decide they don’t want to cancel but remain inactive, Sony will no longer accept their payments until they make use of the service.
Nintendo has also changed its policy. From now on, new users who purchase Nintendo Switch Online will not have auto-renew enabled by default, it will need to be selected after subscribing.
CMA Executive Director Michael Grenfell said:
“As a result of our investigations, changes will be made within the industry to protect consumers and address potential issues caused by automatic renewals.
Today’s announcement is the result of our investigations into the online video game industry. Companies in other industries that offer auto-renewal options should review their practices to ensure they comply with consumer protection laws.”
Previously, Microsoft had committed to changing how Xbox Game Pass information was shown to consumers. With the change, it needs to clearly show the user how to unsubscribe and offer refunds for its services.
Last week, a survey showed that 46% of PlayStation and Nintendo gamers would subscribe to Game Pass if they added Activision titles.