Following a moderately successful relaunch of the Playstation Network in the US, Sony is ready to do the same in Asia. The company's online game service will be back up and running in Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Thailand tomorrow, after being completely disabled for more than one month.
The reason it took longer to restore service overseas is because the government in Japan, where Sony is headquartered, required the company to provide answers and assurances that appropriate measures were taken to make the service more secure.
In order to get back online, users will first need to download a new PS3 firmware update. Among other things, this update requires that users change their password as a security precaution, and also no doubt implements new protective features behind the scenes.
Sony also introduced new password requirements - passwords must now be at least eight characters long, contain both numbers and letters, and cannot use the same character three times in a row.
Far and away, this is the longest that PSN services have been completely suspended, and neither Xbox Live nor the Wii's online gaming services have ever been disrupted nearly this long. On April 21, Sony informed users "it may be a full day or two before we’re able to get the service completely back up and running." It ended up being 23 days.
During that time, the issue went from a minor annoyance to a corporate scandal to a catastrophic multi-million-dollar cluster**** that will go down in the annals of gaming history.
As a small token of its appreciation for users' patience, Sony has offered free enrollment into an identity theft protection program, and promises to give away a handful of premium downloadable products and services to all registered PSN customers.