Update: A spokeswoman for Sony has added clarification behind the change:

Back at IFA in September, we announced that we would be changing the name of Sony’s online entertainment services from Qriocity to Sony Entertainment Network. The reason for this change was so that there was more unity between the services and the multiple Sony devices where they can be accessed. The goal is for there to be one networked log-in for all Sony services. By changing the name ‘PlayStation Network account’ to ‘Sony Entertainment Network account’, helps clarify the unity between PSN and other Sony Entertainment Network services. Users can enjoy the same services continuously without being required to change their username and password. However, this change will not affect the naming of “PlayStation®Network accounts” when viewed on a PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system.

She also explicitly stated that “PSN is not changing its name or going away.”

Original story: Sony has announced that the PlayStation Network will be joining the Sony Entertainment Network (SEN) on Tuesday.

It’s important to note that this change currently only applies to PSN “accounts,” and includes a number of Terms of Service updates. But it has caused rampant speculation: Is Sony planning to rebrand the PlayStation Network altogether? Is it hoping to distance itself from last year’s security breach and month-long network outage?

Newly appointed CEO Kaz Hirai has stated that there will be no PlayStation 4 reveal at this year’s E3. His careful wording has led others to question whether the next Sony console will even carry the PlayStation name.

The Sony Entertainment Network was revealed last year and wraps many major Sony services, including Video Unlimited (previously Video on Demand by Qriocity) and Music Unlimited, into a single platform.

We have contacted Sony for further details.

The email is included below:

On February 7, 2012, Sony Network Entertainment International LLC (“SNEI”) will update its Terms of Service and User Agreement and its Privacy Policy. As a part of this update, your “PlayStation®Network account” will be renamed a “Sony Entertainment Network account”

The first time you sign in to your Sony Entertainment Network account on or after February 7, 2012, you will be asked to agree to the new Terms of Service and User Agreement and Privacy Policy with SNEI if you wish to continue using your Sony Entertainment Network account. Please review all changes to the Terms of Service and User Agreement and Privacy Policy carefully before indicating your agreement.

In particular, these are some of the additions and changes we have to these agreements:

New terms for parents of minor, subaccount holders regarding the limitations of chat parental controls. Your reacceptance of the Terms of Service and User Agreement and Privacy Policy affirms your consent to the sharing of your child’s data that may occur if your child utilizes certain communication functionalities on PlayStation devices such as PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita systems.

New terms that explain the location-based services offered through the PlayStation Vita system. For parents of minor, subaccount holders your reacceptance of the Terms of Service and User Agreement and Privacy Policy affirms your consent to your subaccount holder’s user of these services on the PlayStation Vita system.

A description of our “What’s New” section, which provides topical information about our services and advertisements.
Information about pre-ordering content.

The name of your “PlayStation Network account” is changing to a “Sony Entertainment Network account.”

You may click here to review the changes to the Terms of Service and User Agreement and you may click here to review the changes to the Privacy Policy.

The rebranding of PlayStation Network accounts to Sony Entertainment Network accounts is a change in name only. Your username or password will not change, nor are we asking you to change them. On Sony Computer Entertainment’s PlayStation 3 and PlayStation Vita systems, this rebranding will occur in connection with software updates for these devices. (Note, this change will not be applied to the PSP® (PlayStation®Portable) system at this time.)

This transition is based on Sony’s goal to enhance its unique digital entertainment offering. As a series of these activities Sony started last September, PlayStation Network will be aligned with “Sony Entertainment Network.” This helps us get closer to our goal of establishing a global comprehensive network platform of services across games, movies, music and more, all accessible from one convenient account.

The Sony Entertainment Network account also enables use of Sony’s compelling non-game services such as Music Unlimited, Video Unlimited and PlayMemories Online (currently called Personal Space) across a variety of network-connected devices. If you do not agree with the new Terms of Service and User Agreement or Privacy Policy, you may decline to accept them, and you will no longer be able to access your account.

If you wish to close your account or request a refund of your wallet balance, or have any questions, please contact Customer Service by clicking here. For more information, please click here.

Thank you very much for being a customer!

You can check out the Sony Entertainment Network website here.