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Sony PlayStation Web Store launches without fanfare

Sony has launched an online version of its PlayStation Store, but without an official announcement.

Sony has launched a browser-based PlayStation Store, meaning you can start buying TV shows, films and games through your regular web browser, without having to fire up your PS3. It'll be in direct competition with Microsoft's Xbox store.

Why no big announcement, you might ask? Well it's not quite finished yet. Pages fail to load, and it's littered with typos ('Gam' where it means 'Game', for example). Nevertheless, it's live, so let's have a gander at what's on offer.

The bad news is that full games don't come cheap. Latest releases like Tiger PGA Tour 2013 Holiday Edition will set you back a ridiculous £59.99, and the Mass Effect Trilogy £57.99. Others are more reasonable at around the 30 quid mark, but still, in the age of cheapo mobile time wasters, it makes you wonder how much longer console games can charge a premium.

Anything you buy from the store will be compatible with your PS3, PS Vita and PSP. Your purchases will be sent to each of your devices, as you buy through your account, not just your phone, tablet, or console. (It's similar to when you buy from Google Play or iTunes.) Movies and TV episodes will play on your PC, Sony tablet, and Xperia smart phone. There's also a 12 Deals of Christmas promotion going on at the moment.

Fred Dutton, Sony Computer Entertainment Europe's blog manager, acknowledged that the store wasn't finished yet. When asked why Sony hadn't made an announcement, Dutton wrote in the comments: "[W]e are testing a new Web store, which we look forward to announcing and launching to the PlayStation/Sony community shortly." So there you go.

What do you make of the online store? Are console games too pricey compared to mobile fare? And should Sony have put the store live while still testing it? Let me know what you reckon in the comments, or on our Facebook page.