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PlayStation 3 early adopters can now claim ‘Other OS’ settlement cash

PS3 power button.
Image used with permission by copyright holder
Did you buy a PlayStation 3 console prior to April 2010? If you did, you’re entitled to a portion of a cash settlement arising from a class action lawsuit leveled against Sony following the removal of the console’s advertised “Other OS” feature.

All consumers who purchased an original-model (“fat”) PlayStation 3 console before April 2010 are eligible to receive a $9 payment by filling out an online claims form. Users who can provide proof of installing an alternative operating system on the PlayStation 3 prior to the loss of Other OS compatibility may receive settlement payments as high as $55.

Released worldwide in 2006, Sony’s PlayStation 3 initially advertised a feature that allowed users to install Linux or other Unix-based operating systems on top of the console’s main system software, making the platform a useful tool for developers. Sony later removed the feature as part of a firmware update issued in March of 2010, citing security concerns.

The removal afterward kicked off a series of class action lawsuits from affected players, all of which were later dismissed in court. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit afterward reversed one of these dismissals, opening the door for further litigation and eventually leading to this week’s settlement.

“A proposed Settlement has been reached in a class action lawsuit against Sony Computer Entertainment America LLC challenging the issuance of a firmware update to disable the ‘Other OS’ functionality from PlayStation 3 ‘Fat’ model computer entertainment consoles,” the settlement document reads. “The Other OS function enabled users to run Linux as an alternative operating system on Fat PS3s. SCEA denies that it did anything wrong. The Court has not decided who is right in the lawsuit.”

The settlement continues: “Class Members who submit a claim with the required proof of purchase and proof of use of the Other OS feature are entitled to receive $55. Class Members who submit a claim with proof of purchase and attest that they intended to use the Other OS function, lost value or desired functionality, or believe they were otherwise injured are entitled to receive $9.”

The deadline for claims, objections, and exclusions from the PlayStation 3’s Other OS settlement is December 7. Cash settlements will be released following a final approval hearing, which is dated for January 24, 2017.

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