Sony’s first major software update for the PlayStation 5 console is now available to download. The biggest feature to come by way of the update is the ability to now store (not play) PlayStation 5 games on an external hard drive.
Announced through a PlayStation Blog post, Although users will be unable to play PlayStation 5 games directly from the external storage device, they can copy those games back onto the console’s SSD when they wish to play them again.
Sony reaffirms that it is working on supporting storage expansion via that M.2 drive “in the future”. However, the company has not detailed a window of time when the software update required will be available.
The software update also included cross-generation social features. PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 players can now Share Play together while in a chat party. PlayStation 5 players can enable their friends on PlayStation 4 to view their game screen and even enable them to try the game out through Share Play. The same goes for PlayStation 4 players. Share Play can also be used to grant a friend a virtual controller for co-op games.
There are also a number of quality of life improvements as well. Players can now disable in-game chat and adjust the volume of party members’ microphones. The PlayStation 5’s Game Base has been slightly altered for a more streamlined process of being in a chat party and seeing your friends list. For accessibility, Sony has included a screen zoom feature to adjust the magnification of the screen. New Trophy options are also included, enabling the player to determine and customize the video clips taken when unlocking certain Trophies.
The PlayStation app has also received some love. Users can now manage storage options, compare Trophies with friends, and join multiplayer games directly through the app, which is available on iOS and Android.
Additionally, and something Sony did not detail in the blog, was the inclusion of a feature to automatically switch the video output when non-HDR content is on screen. Typically, users would have to manually adjust their console’s settings while viewing non-HDR content. However, the software update now enables the console to make that adjustment automatically. Players using a 120Hz monitor with their PlayStation 5 will also see that the console now supports 1080p with a high refresh rate. However, VRR support has not been included.
Finally, the update provided HDMI control options. Using the One-Touch Play feature, users can turn on their console when turning on their TV. Additionally, Sony has included a Power Off Link option, which will set the console to rest mode when the TV display is turned off.