While PlayStation 4 owners have always been able to upgrade the console’s storage, the process has involved opening up the machine and replacing the internal HDD. But now, four years after it launched, the PS4 is finally receiving support for external hard drives.
Sony Interactive Entertainment revealed that software update 4.50 will bring several new additions to the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro, including custom wallpapers – letting you set in-game screenshots as a background, Quick Menu improvements, a simplified notification list, and the ability to watch 3D Blu-Rays on PlayStation VR. But being able to add any USB 3.0 HDD drive up to 8TB in size will likely be the most welcome element.
Sony says that all games and apps saved on the external device will appear on the Home Screen’s Content Launcher, while save files will still be stored locally on the PS4.
PlayStation 4 Pro owners are getting a new feature that’s exclusive to the more powerful console: Boost mode. It brings improvements to certain older games, increasing their frame rates, speeding up loading times, and allowing them to run smoother.
The mode “lets [the] PS4 Pro run at a higher GPU and CPU clock speed in order to improve gameplay on some PS4 games that were released before the launch of PS4 Pro,” a company spokesperson said in a statement. “Games that have a variable frame rate may benefit from a higher frame rate, and load times may be shorter in some games too.”
Boost mode won’t work for every game, and there may be occasions when the difference is so small that it goes unnoticed. Sony even says users should deactivate the feature if they experience any “unwanted reactions/gameplay effects.” But it could still help convince some people to upgrade to a Pro, something that few PS4 owners are currently doing.
The update started rolling out to beta program members on Friday. It will arrive for everyone else over the coming weeks.