A London court ruled on Tuesday that Sony must file a class action lawsuit seeking up to 6.3 billion pounds ($7.9 billion) over allegations that the PlayStation maker abused its dominant position, resulting in unfair prices for customers.
Sony Interactive Entertainment (SIE) was sued last year on behalf of nearly nine million people in the UK who purchased digital games or add-on content through Sony’s PlayStation Store.
Alex Neal, a consumer advocate who has worked on previous campaigns, brought the case against Sony. It says the company abused its dominant position by requiring that digital games and add-ons be bought and sold only through the PlayStation Store, which takes a 30% commission from developers and publishers.
According to the complaint, this caused customers to pay higher prices for games and add-ons than they otherwise would have.
Sony’s lawyers claimed the case was “flawed from beginning to end” and said the case should be dismissed.
The Competition Appeal Tribunal ruled that Neal’s case could go ahead, but said that people who made purchases from the PlayStation Store after the case was brought in 2022 should be removed from the proposed class of claimants.
Tuesday’s ruling was “the first step in ensuring consumers get what they are entitled to,” Neal said in a statement. Sony did not immediately respond to a request for comment. (Reporting by Sam Tobin; Editing by Aurora Ellis)
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