The system update will add the ability to store PS5 games on external USB drives (but not play from them), and cross-gen Share Play, meaning PS5 users can let friends on PS4 remotely play their games.
In addition, Sony said it’s made various improvements to the console’s Control menu, including the ability to easily switch between Parties and Friends.
Sony will also make additions to the PlayStation smartphone app, it said, including the ability to join a multiplayer session on PS5 from the app, manage your PS5 console storage, compare trophy collections with friends, and sort and filter products shown in the PlayStation Store.
In a post on the PlayStation Blog, Sony’s Hideaki Nishino suggested that further additions would be contained in the full update. “We’re only scratching the surface of the many updates and improvements we’ve made across PS5, PS4, and PS App, so check them out and let us know what you think,” he wrote.
You can see the full list of changes, in Sony’s words, below.
PS5 April 2021 System Update
PS5 Storage Expansion and Management
- Store PS5 Games on Compatible External USB Drives.* With this feature, you can now transfer your PS5 games to USB extended storage from your console’s internal storage. It’s a great way to extend the storage capabilities of your PS5 console, and you can seamlessly copy your PS5 games back to the console’s internal storage when you’re ready to play. It is faster to reinstall PS5 games from USB extended storage than to re-download or copy them from a disc.
- Because PS5 games are designed to take advantage of the console’s ultra high-speed SSD, PS5 titles can’t be played from USB extended storage. PS5 titles also cannot be directly downloaded to USB extended storage. However, games that you transfer or copy back to internal storage will automatically update when applicable. In addition, you can select which game modes you want to install (such as campaign or multiplayer) for select titles that support the option.
- For tips on using USB extended storage on PS5, including storage device requirements, please visit: https://www.playstation.com/en-us/support/hardware/ps5-extended-storage/.
New Social Features for PS4 and PS5 Consoles
- Cross-generation Share Play. PS4 and PS5 players can now Share Play together while chatting in parties. This means PS5 console users can let their friends on PS4 consoles view their game screen, or even try out the PS5 games through Share Play, and vice versa. Options include the ability to share your screen with a friend, pass your controller virtually to a friend, or pass a second controller virtually to play co-op games together.
- Request to Join Game Session. A selection of your friends’ joinable game sessions will now appear on both PS5 and PS4 consoles, allowing for more gameplay opportunities together. The “Request to Join” option also serves as a shortcut to sending a game invite, reducing the time it takes for you to get into games with friends. Through the Privacy Settings menu, you can modify who can interact with you through parties, games and messages.
Enhanced Control and Personalization Options for PS5 Consoles
- Improved Game Base. The Game Base menu has been improved for quicker access to important content and features. You can now easily switch between Parties and Friends to start chatting with your existing parties or see what each of your online friends is up to. In addition, you can turn notifications on or off for each of the parties you’re in.
- Disable Game Chat or Adjust Players’ Volume. You can now quickly disable in-game chat, which turns off your mic audio and the voice audio of other players. Additionally, you can easily adjust the individual voice chat volume of other players in the same chat so you don’t have to ask your friends to lower or increase their mic volume each time.
- Game Update Pre-download. Once it’s enabled by developers, title updates for games will pre-download to your console if the “automatic updates” setting is enabled and your console is on or in rest mode. This will let you start playing the latest version of a game immediately after the update’s release.
- Customize Game Library. With the ability to search your library or hide games from view, it’s now easier to find content and personalize your view of your game library.
- Screen Zoom. You can now adjust the magnification of the screen to suit your preference from the Settings menu.
- New Trophy Settings and Stats Screen. The level of trophies that results in automatic capture of a screenshot or video clip can now be customized — so you can now choose to only capture and save images/videos of moments when you earn higher-grade trophies, like Gold or Platinum. We’re also introducing a new player Trophy Stats screen, where you can check out the summary of your trophy level and status at a glance.