The biggest problem with the PlayStation 4 is getting fixed

Sony’s PlayStation 4 is a ridiculously popular game console, with over 50 million sold since launch in 2013. At this point, nearly four years later, there are dozens of fantastic games on Sony’s console.

Uncharted 4Sony‘Uncharted 4: A Thief’s End’ is just one of many gorgeous, excellent games on the PlayStation 4.

But with that wealth of games comes a major problem: storage space.

The standard issue PlayStation 4 comes with a measly 500 GB of storage space. Sounds like a lot, right? As most PS4 owners will tell you, it fills up mighty quickly. With many major games these days coming in at 30 – 80 GBs, you can easily fill that storage space with a dozen games or so.

A frustrating juggling scenario emerges from this situation — many folks find themselves deleting older games as a means of playing new ones. That’s not such a big deal if you’re playing mostly single-player, narrative-driven games that you’re unlikely to re-visit. But with more and more games these days — stuff like “Overwatch,” for instance — people are sticking around for months at a time.

So, what’s the solution?

It’s true: An external hard drive is your most logical choice. Unfortunately, the current PlayStation 4 doesn’t allow for external hard drives. You can unscrew a panel on the side of your PS4, remove the internal hard drive, and replace it with a new one. It’s a whole thing.

Or, even better, after the upcoming PlayStation 4 system update (“4.50”), you can just plug an external hard drive in and immediately expand your storage dramatically. How dramatically? Up to 8 TB. That’s sixteen times more storage space, in case you’re wondering.

PlayStation 4SonyIn the settings menu, under Application Saved Data Management, you’ll find the Saved Data on USB Storage Device option. This is where you can manage your console’s storage.

Pretty great!

The one caveat is that the external hard drive has to be of the USB 3.0 variety — any hard drive you buy in 2017 should be compliant with this, but do yourself a favour and check the box/ask a sales associate if you’re unsure.

There are a couple of other neat features in the PS4 system update that are worth knowing about:

  • Custom wallpapers are finally being added, so you can use in-game screenshots as the background on your PS4’s main menu.
  • Sony’s streamlining several menus, including the “Quick Menu” (which comes up from a push-and-hold of the PlayStation button) and the “Notifications” menu (which has been simplified into a single list).
PlayStation 4SonyThe custom wallpaper in action.

It’s not clear exactly when the 4.50 system update will arrive for all PS4 owners, but anyone in the beta program gets access starting on Friday, February 3. That said, we expect it will roll out to everyone in the next few weeks. If you want to read all the details from Sony, check out the blog post right here.

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