Sony has updated the terms of warranty for all PlayStation systems sold in the U.S. and Canada today, following a warning issued by the Federal Trade Commission over a 1957 law that governs what companies can and can’t include in their manufacturer warranties.
If this sounds familiar, Sony, Nintendo, and Microsoft were three of the six companies to receive warning letters last month indicating a 30 day turnaround to remove language that implicitly states or implies “warranty coverage is conditioned on the use of specific parts of services.”
The “warranty void if removed” label on all their products, according to the FTC, violates the Magnuson-Moss Warranty Act which gives consumers the right to use non-first-party parts in repairs. To reflect this, Sony changed the language used to describe its terms of warranty.
“Our previous warranties stated that the warranty does not apply if the warranty seal on the product has been altered or removed," reads the other major change. "Our updated warranty states that the warranty does not apply ‘to damage caused by’ opening the product or to damage caused by service performed by someone other than a representative of SIE or an SIE-authorized service provider."
Lastly, Sony has included a clause that guarantees free return shipping for in-warranty consoles, as well as repaired and factory-recertified consoles in the U.S. and Canada. This applies to all products Sony supports, including the PS4, PS3, PS Vita, and PSVR. The updated warranty also covers products bought before this change.
Update: Nintendo has also updated its terms of warranty, becoming the second company to comply with the Federal Trade Commission's warning about the illegal language surrounding warranty coverage.
Now the updated terms read, “this warranty shall not apply if this product has been damaged by products not sold or licensed by Nintendo (Including, but not limited to, adapters, software, and power supplies).”
This falls in line with Sony’s revised policy, where both terms now say that a warranty is void when damage is done to the product as an outcome of using third-party components or peripherals, not when using any of them.