Pulling the Plug: Twitch’s Silent Death on PS3

    When I downloaded the Twitch app on the PS3, the only platform I had to watch Mario Maker Colosseum, a Mario Speedrun Community charity stream, I was hoping for it to work with little to no problems. Youtube works flawlessly and there were no public statements from Sony or Twitch about ending the support for the PS3’s Twitch app. I opened the app and was brought to the browsing screen, reassured that everything was going to work. I searched “GrandPOOBear”, the Twitch streamer hosting the event, and finally clicked on the MMC stream to watch it. Then the buffering circle appeared, seemed like it was loading, and then stayed there…for over ten minutes.

    I thought that something must have been wrong, so firstly I restarted the app, and secondly did a quick Google search. What I found were threads from various message boards talking about their Twitch apps not being able to play videos, and that is all I found. No statement from Sony, no statement from Twitch, the PS3 users were forgotten.

    One interesting thread is on the Twitch subreddit, where PS3 users stated many times that the app was no longer working. One particular thread, posted in May, answered some of my questions. Kixelated, a Twitch employee, responded to the thread by attempting to revert a change that may have broken the app, but it did not work. Later, Kixelated stated that Twitch does not maintain the app themselves and that they contacted the team that does run it. It seemed like good news, that things may be addressed, but then more silence came. The latest post on the thread is from 20 days ago. People still don’t know that the app is dead.

    Communication is important because it makes sure that all consumers know what is happening to their product. When a service they use is no longer going to be supported, they deserve to know that so they can make adjustments and purchases to make sure that they will still have a way to use their product. The PlayStation Store allows PS3 users to still download the Twitch app and says completely nothing about it being broken. This is a problem that needs to be addressed.

    There are still people out there that only own a PS3 and have not purchased a new console, and there are people that have current gen consoles in one location and must use last-gen consoles in another. I am in the latter half, and the lack of communication between Sony and PS3 owners hurt, because I know there are people out there still wondering whether Twitch will ever work again on the PS3.

    Luckily a thread on the PlayStation Community forum provided closure. User WonderGamer1978 contacted Twitch asking if there was a plan to fix the PS3 app, and Twitch responded stating, “The app is no longer supported for PS3. You can watch Twitch on your PS3 browser,” but the PS3’s browser failed to load the page for WonderGamer1978. The Youtube video, created by WonderGamer1978, a.k.a. Shane Stevens has been viewed over 6,000 times since it was posted six months ago.

    When asked about why it is still on the PSN store, Twitch support stated that it was not taken care of by then and that they were not responsible for the app still being available to download. On February 28, 2018, Playstation announced that it was going to remove PS3 and PS Vita titles from its PS+ monthly games lineup starting on March 8, 2019. This was an important statement to PS3 owners, it was a statement that they were being left behind and that they had to own a PS4 by next year. This was expected, but it also means that they have no excuse to not manage the PlayStation Store on PS3 this year. Twitch should be removed, and they should have notified users about its lack of support.

    With Twitch and Sony’s lack of communication, thousands of PS3 users have been confused about the state of their beloved app, hoping that one day it would be updated and miraculously fixed. That they did not have to spend hundreds of dollars just so they can watch their favorite streams, but alas, we have the confirmation we need through digging through various threads on the internet and nothing from Sony. So please, Sony, remove Twitch’s app from PSN and make sure that last-gen console owners are not forgotten.