In a move that needed to be made to match key competitor Spark (who’ve offered contract deals for Xbox Series S/X), Vodafone says its long-term goal is to make gaming more accessible to New Zealanders in an entertainment medium that is already on a high uptake.
How that accessibility point is ushered in is a fascinating prospect as 5G rolls out nationwide over the next year.
The deal, which is available from Thursday, could also provide a small lifeline for gamers who missed out on preordering the hotly anticipated PS5 back in September when all launch day stock sold out in a matter of hours after PlayStation revealed its $820 price tag for New Zealand customers.
Finer details about how gamers can purchase the PS5 through the telco remain vague at the time of writing, but Vodafone has confirmed that sales will be online only and can be placed from Thursday, November 12th.
Whether or not Vodafone will allow the PS5 to be purchased on a contract (allowing people to pay it off over 24 months) or whether a full payout will be required is also unclear. Currently, the Vodafone website is showing the full RRP for the PS5 and PS5 All Digital consoles ($819 and $649 respectively).
TheRealMichaelPulman reached out to Vodafone to clarify purchasing options but haven’t heard back at the time of writing.
Those who signed up to purchase the Xbox Series consoles through the Xbox All Access Program via Spark pay $52 per month for the premium X version while the smaller all-digital S version comes in at $40 per month with both plans coming bundled with the popular Xbox Game Pass service.
Vodafone Consumer Director Carolyn Luey says that the skills and popularity of gaming made the decision to partner with PlayStation one of benefit to its consumers.
“Gaming brings people together and develops valuable skills such as problem-solving, concentration and critical thinking”, Luey said, “it is enjoyed by people of all walks of life and is increasing in popularity at an exponential rate.”
In 2019, Vodafone partnered with esports provider LetsPlay.Live (LPL) and has produced several esports tournaments, leagues and and experiences throughout 2020.