Sony reveals PS4 system software update, features available at launch

The PS4 is due out in about 3 weeks and already we have our first software update ready to go.

PS4 system software 1.50, which will weigh in around 300MB, will be available on day one, and will unlock several features including PS Vita remote play, Second Screen capabilities, and the ability to share gameplay and screenshots using the Share button and much more.

Other features include Face recognition and commands, Second Screen, Multi log-in, Background music player and Play as you download.

The suspend/resume feature, for whatever reason, will not be ready to go quite yet and will come in the future.

Read on.

Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. (SCEI) announced that it will release system software update version 1.50*1 for PlayStation 4 (PS4) system simultaneously with the official North American launch of the system on November 15, 2013.  By updating to the latest system software version, users will be able to enjoy a variety of exciting features from the day of launch.

The PS4 system was designed from the ground up to ensure that the very best games and most immersive experiences reach PlayStation users.  It redefines rich and riveting gameplay with powerful graphics and speed, deeply integrated social capabilities, and innovative second-screen features utilizing devices such as the PlayStation Vita (PS Vita) system.  SCE will continue to enhance the PS4 system through future system software updates.

The following features are available on PS4 at North American launch:

  • Remote Play
    Users will be able to access PS4 titles displayed on their living room TVs and play them on a PS Vita system over Wi-Fi networks  by using PS4 Link*2*3.  SCE anticipates that most PS4 titles will be playable on the PS Vita system through Remote Play*4.
  • Second Screen
    Users can use the PS4 Link*2 application for the PS Vita system, and PlayStation®App for iPhone, iPad, and Androidbased smartphones and tablets*5, to use these devices as second screens in supported titles.  PlayStation®App has the ability to enable users to interact with games with their mobiles devices.  For example on THE PLAYROOM, a title pre-installed in all PS4 systems that requires PlayStation®Camera, users can draw pictures on their mobile device screens and flick them towards the TV.  The images then appear as a 3D object within the game.
  • Record, take screen shots, and upload gameplay effortlessly
    The PS4 system provides dedicated, “always on” video encoding systems that enables seamless uploading of gameplay.  Users can share their epic triumphs by simply hitting the “SHARE button” on PS4 Wireless Controller (DUALSHOCK®4), take screenshots or scan through the last 15 minutes of gameplay, tag it and return to the game—the video uploads as the user plays.  At the PS4 system’s launch in North America, users will be able to share their images and videos with friends on Facebook and screenshots with followers on Twitter*6.
  • Broadcast and spectate gameplay
    The PS4 system also enhances social spectating by enabling users to broadcast their gameplay in real-time to game fans around the globe, using Ustream and Twitch*7 live internet streaming services.  SCE provides two ways for users to view live broadcasts. First, the Live from PlayStation® application on PS4 aggregates streams from all PlayStation® users.  Second, users can spectate friends’ PS4 gameplay from PCs, and applications such as Ustream, Twitch, and browsers, which are installed on their mobile devices.  These applications can be easily started up via PlayStation®App, and users can also use these applications to post comments to gameplay broadcasts.  Furthermore, users with PlayStation®Camera can stream camera images and microphone sounds along with their live gameplay broadcast.
  • Play as you download
    This feature enables users to play supported digital titles as they are being downloaded*8.  When a game is purchased, users can start playing after PS4 downloads a portion of the data, while the rest of the game is downloaded in the background during actual gameplay.  Games may be downloaded in stand-by mode.
  • Multi log-in
    A maximum of 4 users can log-in to a single PS4 system simultaneously.  These players can use their own save data to play games, and also earn trophies on their own Sony Entertainment Network accounts even when playing a multi-player game together on a single PS4 system*9.
  • Party (Voice chat)
    By using the Mono Headset bundled with the PS4 system, users will be able to chat with up to eight friends enjoying different applications or games.  Furthermore, users can use Party to chat between PS4 and PS Vita systems.
  • Face recognition and voice commands*10
    Users with PlayStation®Camera will be able to register their facial image onto their PS4 system, and login to their system using facial recognition instead of DUALSHOCK®4.  Furthermore, users can use either the microphone of the Mono Head set connected to DUALSHOCK®4, or PlayStation®Camera to navigate through the PS4 home screen (PlayStation®Dynamic Menu) with voice commands to start up games and shutdown the system, among other features*11.
  • Background music player
    Users can enjoy gameplay while listening to music in the background with Music Unlimited, a cloud-based digital music service*12.  Users can also voice chat with friends while listening to music.
  • Online Multiplayer
    PlayStation®Plus (PS Plus) members will be able to play PS4 titles online with other players via the network.  PS Plus makes it easy for members to join available online multiplayer matches in a variety of ways, including the ability to easily join a game from a live stream broadcast or Party voice chats.
  • Blu-ray Disc™ and DVD player
    Users can enjoy not only gaming on their PS4 system, but also Blu-ray and DVD video contents*13.

Furthermore, some features will not be available at launch, such as “suspend/resume mode” which is a feature that keeps the PS4 system in a low power state and promptly takes users back to their game.  SCE will provide additional information about system software update version 1.50 and features available at the PS4 system’s North America launch, and features that will be available after launch, in the near future.

SCE will continuously enrich services and features of the PS4 system, while striving to further expand the PlayStation platform.


*1 Download data size of system software version 1.50 is about 300MB. Although dependent on users’ network environments, download of the update will take about 5~15 minutes with a broadband speed of 5~10Mpbs.
*2 The latest PS Vita system software version to be released soon will be required to use PS4 Link.
*3 Depending on network environment or titles, remote play performance may vary outside of the home.
*4 Remote Play will not be enabled on all games, including those that require peripherals such as PlayStation®Camera or certain third party peripherals.
*5 Depending on the version of OS or other conditions, users may not be able to use the application.
*6 Users must sign-up for individual accounts to use Facebook and Twitter.
*7 Users must sign-up for individual accounts to use Ustream and Twitch.
*8 Time it takes to begin playing will vary depending on game data size and network environments.  Not all titles support this feature.
*9 Requirements for achieving trophies vary by titles.
*10 Voice recognition can be used without updating to system software version 1.50.
*11 Please refer to the online manual for recognizable voice commands.
*12 Offered by Sony Corporation. Visit the below website for further details.
*13 At first time use, users must connect to the internet to activate this feature.


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