E3 Interview: VidZone

A lot of you have been asking for more information on the VidZone music video application in the comments section, so I met up with Lou Jackson and Michael Russo from VidZone to answer some of your questions.

VidZone, which will be available free from PlayStation Store on June 11, provides unlimited access to thousands of streaming music videos and the ability to create unlimited playlists, all on your PS3.

VidZone - Lou Jackson and Michael Russo

Here at E3 they’ve been showing a promotional video featuring Kasabian and Dizzee Rascal, so I asked whether we would also be able to access interviews and live performances.

“VidZone is partnered with a production company that provides us with exclusive interviews, behind the scenes music video features and live gig footage, and that’s going to be in place at launch,” replied Jackson. “PS3 owners will be able to watch an interview with Kasabian, as well as an exclusive live performance of Processed Beats, which was recorded in London and has a phenomenal vibe.”

“The PlayStation community is one of the most important parts of VidZone’s evolution and we’ll be listening to them and finding out which artists they’d like to see. Actually, we’re trying to choose an act for a live performance this summer and we’d love people to use the comments section of this post to tell us who we should try to get.”

NowPlaying-BlackEyedPeas PlayList2-LadyGaga

I then asked how many videos will be available at launch.

“There are over 10,000 videos,” said Jackson “They will be updated every week, and in terms of quantities, those updates will be in the hundreds. Our ultimate dream is to have every music video ever made on the service, as well as classic live performances dating back to the 1950s, in their entirety.”

I know a lot of you want to find out which countries will be able to access VidZone and why certain territories will not be able to at launch, so I also asked for an answer on that.

“Initially, we’re launching VidZone in the UK, Ireland, Australia, Italy, France, Spain and Germany,” said Jackson.

Search-TheProdigy Search-KingsofLeon2

“The reasons we’re only launching in those countries for the time being,” added Russo, “are largely to do with sourcing local advertising that is relevant and appropriate. We can’t wait to roll out in the remaining territories though; we’ll bring you more information when we have it.”

Having been able to play around with the service here at E3, I’m very impressed. The video quality is superb, the menus are slick and intuitive and it’s a piece of cake setting up playlists from the impressive collection of videos available.

To end the interview, Jackson and Russo gave me their dream playlists, and here they are:

Michael Russo:

  • Michael Jackson:Thriller
  • U2:Where The Streets Have No Name
  • Jamiroquai: Virtual Insanity
  • Lady GaGa: Poker Face
  • Mika: Grace Kelly

Lou Jackson:

  • Foo Fighters: The Pretender
  • Eminem: Stan
  • Pendulum: Slam
  • Fatboy Slim: Right Here Right Now
  • The Prodigy: Warrior’s Dance

So tell us guys, which music videos will be in your dream playlist, and which live performers would you like to see this summer?

6 Author replies

Question. Will peole from Holland be able to download VidZone on 11 June? Because the rumour was that ony the UK, Germany, Spain and france could download the VidZone Service.

Wow I can’t wait till 11 June (if it also comes out in the Netherlands)


Wait sorry I see in the tekst that Holland isn’t included. Will we be able to download VidZone from the UK store if you have a UK PSN?

Unfortunate. Sadly I have to say I can’t care much for this service until it arrives. I hope the countries that are included have fun with it.

This looks awesome!

Just a quick Question – it says coming to australia – will I be able to get this in NZ or is it coming to NZ at a later date?


Fun for the few of you that are allowed to use the service.
The rest of us in Sweden and the rest of Europe will be still wating for this and the video store (forever?)


This sounds great. Our own personal music channel, you can’t beat that. Can you watch any video (on the service) whenever you want, or will there be restrictions?

Only problem is I live in the U.S :( I hope it comes soon I can see this being a huge hit. My playlist would be of the top of my head:

Cut Copy
The Smiths
And Erasure: A Little Respect!

James Gallagher 04 June, 2009 @ 18:44

No restrictions at all, and good playlist.


yeah, but u guys just got FFVII, so dont get too disappointed about being hard done by. I’m actually thinking ill have to get a us account lol.

So looking forward to this.
Maybe a good live performance would be a band like Coldplay or someone. Maybe an older one like Queen though??

Cant wait to have this going in the background of some parties.

Vidzone sounds great, as i’m always watchin the MTV’s so this should be interesting.

I wonder what the resolution of the videos will be. Also will they all be in full screen/wide screen?
MTV’s seem to air in 4.3 which isn’t great.

God news though and free………… is there a catch?????

James Gallagher 04 June, 2009 @ 18:45

No catches, and you can press the SELECT button at any point to go into full screen mode.

xKillerMonkeyx 04 June, 2009 @ 06:47

Really cant wait, use my PS3 a lot to listen to music, now i can listen to music with the videos.

Alex_Assassin_08 04 June, 2009 @ 06:48

can’t wait :)


Looks great, definitely use it :)


This is such an awesome addition, but it SUCKS so bad that it’s not for all of EU. Why not for all of Europe?

Also, is EU going to EVER get a video store like the US? What’s the problem, you don’t like money Sony? Can you please tell us something about what the problem is? Please?

WhiteWolfDK 04 June, 2009 @ 07:16

To be honest, when I heard the news I though – FINALLY something that SONY is giving us that M$ doesn’t have, after E3 I had thought that they would finally release the Video download store to Europe, but no we just got to know that they had made even more deals for the american marked, then I read that this will only release in a few countries, so yet again people get disappointed.



Great news for France.

My dream clip playlist :

August Burns Red – Composure
Emmure – Sound Wave Superior
Johnny Cash – Hurt
Flobots – Handlebars
Avenged Sevenfold – Afterlife


Will this come to Norway to?


Aawww… no love for Portugal :(


And what about Belgium? ;-(

“Initially, we’re launching VidZone in the UK, Ireland, Australia, Italy, France, Spain and Germany,” said Jackson.

Yeah, GREAT JOB SONY!!!! (sarcasm)

Why can’t you just launch such a service right the FIRST time? And don’t forget the “we’ll bring you more information when we have it.” blabla….so you mean like the VIDEO store for Europe (aka never)?

Good news, but not for all countries? They deserve it, the hole EU is waiting for a video application… (especially if ‘no-18+ – games-Germany’ got it…).

StefNighthawk 04 June, 2009 @ 07:59

Only 6 EU countries? I wouldn’t call that a European release.
And nice geographical selection; releases in all countries surrounding the Benelux but the Benelux is left out :(


I cant wait!


Looking good :)

How much space will this application take?

WhiteWolfDK 04 June, 2009 @ 08:13

What SONY doesn’t seem to realize is they will loose the struggle in the long run if they don’t strt doing something, most of us in here are loyal to SONY and the brand, but there are a really big bunch of customers that aren’t – if you (SONY) want those customers they need to justify the higher price of PS3, because people just look at the pricetag, they don’t realize that they will end up paying more then a PS3 for the X360 in the end.

Now M$ is launching video-services in Europe also, SONY owns a lot of moviecompanies, they could a videostore within a few months up and running in Europe, making it even a stronger brand, giving another reason for people to get the PS3 instead of X360.

Come on SONY – show us that you actually care and wants to be part of the future in livingrooms across Europe.


singularity0821 04 June, 2009 @ 08:15

Germany is getting it but Austria isn’t? What’s the point? You could use the same ads?!?

Smoutefretter_BE 04 June, 2009 @ 08:17

Great to hear something more about vidzone.
But sadly it isn’t coming to belgium (or benelux).
Let’s hope in the future when they say a EU release it is released in EVERY country in the EU!

craigiversen 04 June, 2009 @ 08:20

Muse would be an awesome artist to use for your live show. They were voted the worlds best live act in 2006 and 2007, have awesome songs and videos, why not Muse?

James Gallagher 04 June, 2009 @ 18:47

Agreed – I saw them at Reading a few years back and it’s the best live show I’ve been to.

olympus1982 04 June, 2009 @ 08:21

Well done for this fab addition for the ps3. I have three questions,

-Is the quality SD or HD?
-A great community addition you could add to this is the ability to share playlists with one another

Now more importantly and probably not related to the vidzone, but why on why can we not have a movie version like this? It could so easily work, right?

James Gallagher 04 June, 2009 @ 18:48

It isn’t HD, but I can assure you the videos look great and there’s no waiting around waiting for downloads.


Does look pretty cool


Looking forward to VidZone.

I’d like to know as well, will it be in SD or HD?

+1 for Muse!!!
Finally, other countries getting screwed other than AU. The US usually get EVERYTHING and we just get to sit back and watch. As for the movie service, pfft who cares?! i wouldnt “pay” to download a movie anyway. america can have it.
a few questions,
1) how big is the application?
2) on average what size are the music vids?
3) how many videos can be added to a playlist?
4) what codecs/format are the videos presented in?

BTW, what the heck is “benelux”?
good work SCEE. Now please don’t delay it!!! (LOL someone had to say it)

majesticbeastt 04 June, 2009 @ 08:40

First the psn cards and now this just great…

[Offtopic]Where are my psn cards sony its taking to goddamn long or atleast make another payment option

xchris2008x 04 June, 2009 @ 08:46

cant wait for this, we need the movie store next


@FBZ1501 – It’s funded by those little adverts you can see in the screenshots (similar to the adverts in HOME or on the store),they seem to be completely unobtrusive yet also relevant and informative so no catch there.

WhiteWolfDK 04 June, 2009 @ 08:55

@ 31 – BeNeLux is the coalition of BElgium, NEtherlands and LUXembourg.


singularity0821 04 June, 2009 @ 08:58

@sumpunk: Its BElgium, the NEtherlands and LUXembourg. ;-)


if they could get either Pendulum or Mindless Self Indulgence for a live performance that would rule.


“Available for free on the playstation store” … Free as in free to browse (no subscription etc) with videos that come at a price?

Free as in beer? Free on the basis of this localised advertizing? Shown in the VidZone part of the store?

James Gallagher 04 June, 2009 @ 18:52

Free as in you can watch as many videos as you like and you never have to pay anything.


How about asking Squarepusher to do the live performance!

Ohhh yeah!!!

CreepingDeath666 04 June, 2009 @ 09:25

Hope there’s come decent roack and metal on there. would love to see soe live metallica or the sword or something like that.


there is a small catch i never read about download to your mobile there is a trailer of it in the store, however it not FREE to download to your mobile, there even a video icon blow the moblile the same icon on your xmb, so you could download videos onto your HDD again you have to pay. :|


For a freebie this sounds pretty sweet, I know Mrs betahoven is going to enjoy it anyway. I’m impressed by the number of videos available, just hope the ads aren’t too intrusive.

For people unhappy about the lack of news on movie downloads I suggest waiting for GC (the European version of E3) in August. There will be news about it then. Although E3 is the biggest games conference I think Sony tend to see it as SCEA’s show, and SCEE like to show off their games and make their big announcements themselves, on their own turf. (That’s likely to be why we didn’t see Heavy Rain or EyePet in the E3 press conference, even though the games are being shown on the show floor).

If we don’t hear by the time of GC then I will join the angry mob :)

“The reasons we’re only launching in those countries for the time being,” added Russo, “are largely to do with sourcing local advertising that is relevant and appropriate. We can’t wait to roll out in the remaining territories though; we’ll bring you more information when we have it.”

Meh, I was looking forward to this service; I have a feeling it’ll take forever to be launched here :/


live i would like to see ac/dc, wolfmother or red hot chilli peppers

my playlist would be

the wolfmother album/wolfmother
the chemical brothers album/ surrender
the chemical brothers album/ push the button
ac/dc album/ in the 20th century box set
dj clue?
red hot chili peppers album/ blood sugar sex magic

This is a very clever little application that I can see being very popular with your “target demographic” – hopefully you will give this plenty of coverage – access 10,000 free music videos and exclusive live performances would make for a good advert!

I’m guessing the areas it operates in is down to the areas VidZone operate in and have the right licences for etc. No doubt they will expand over time – I find it very surprising (but I’m not complaining!) that Sony chose to partner with a UK company rather than a US one – this could have been a big hit in the US (especially to counter the Xbox deal). No doubt VidZone are working on expanding there first.

Will this be a download off the PS Store or a Firmware update (like the Photo Gallery/Life with PlayStation/Home etc)? If it’s a download and not firmware will it still install in the Music section of the XMB? It wouldn’t make sense to load a “game” to watch music!

James Gallagher 04 June, 2009 @ 18:54

It’s a download from the store and when you’ve got it, a VidZone icon appears under Music on the XMB which launches the application.


i DEMAND that they get Lordi to do the live gig.. or Hannah Montana. :)

VidZone does look like a good app’ hope it works as well as Spotify does on my PC.


+1 for Muse :)

Thanks for getting this info to us ! I was hoping for a EU release but this you can’t call one. We (Benelux) are surrounded by countries which are supported by Vidzone :(

It’s a bit strange to say they don’t release it in these countries because they don’t have adds for it :s Sony has to learn people in the EU all (most of the people) speek English so the localisation can wait till later.

@43 vidzone will be visible in the music section of the XMB.


The Killers – Spaceman
Jay-Z – 99 problems
Franz Ferdinand – No You Girls
Justice – Phantom Pt. II
The Wombats – Let’s Dance To Joy Division

Great addition! It’s great to have this kind of services come to Europe. Good job on that one SCEE.


By the way can you try to get Jade Raymond for an interview. It would be great to hear some more from her and assasins creed II.

And it would be awsome if you could get some pictures with her :) she’s great and I don’t understand why she is pushed into the background, she made AC I look better then it was :D.

Tell her I love her :D and again give her a kiss and take a photograph :P

I’m really looking forward to this. I have no special requests for content. If there’s 10,000 vids on there I’ll probably find something I like!

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