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(Pocket-lint) - After many years of selling and renting digital movies and TV shows through PlayStation consoles, Sony is shuttering the service.

From 31 August 2021, users will no longer be able to buy or rent films and series through the PlayStation 4. The PlayStation Store will no longer offer digital video sales from that date.

The reason given is that console owners favour subscription streaming services over paid content: "We've seen tremendous growth from PlayStation fans using subscription-based and ad-based entertainment streaming services on our consoles. With this shift in customer behaviour, we have decided to no longer offer movie and TV purchases and rentals through PlayStation Store," said SIE's head of video business, Vanessa Lee.

On top of the continued rise in popularity of streaming services, like Netflix, Amazon Prime Video, Apple TV+ and Disney+, the PS5 can play 4K Ultra HD Blu-rays - the first PlayStation console to do so. AV purists much prefer the quality of a disc copy over a digital equivalent.

PS4 owners can still purchase or rent films and shows up to and on 31 August. After that time, you can always do the same through Amazon Prime Video or Apple TV if you still want to watch one-off paid content.

Indeed, this is the only option available to PS5 owners already (through the console itself.

What happens to my existing PlayStation videos and movies?

It's also worth noting that your existing library of paid-for movies and TV shows will continue to be available to you, even after the cut off date.

"Users can still access movie and TV content they have purchased through PlayStation Store for on-demand playback on their PS4, PS5 and mobile devices," added Lee.

Writing by Rik Henderson. Originally published on 2 March 2021.