Massive FAQ From Sony on PS4 Features and Limitations

Posted Wed Oct 30, 2013 at 11:30 AM PDT by

FAQ covers Ultra HD, 3D, audio CDs, headsets, PS3 accessories, region locks and much more.

Sony has released a massive FAQ for the PS4, only some of which is included below. Some key notes include the lack of any kind of remote control for the PS4 at launch, only 4K "considered" video support, stereoscopic 3D supported, but no launch content, day-one update needed for Blu-ray and DVD playback, but some workaround options offered, regional lock system similar to PS3 (rare), forced automatic updates for all users for the system and for games, some backwards compatibility for fight sticks and wheels (game and developer specific), no game resume feature at launch, plus spotty support for PlayAsYouDownload, no YouTube Sharing support at launch, mandatory game installs, no media server support, controller headset can play game audio, and unlikely but possible Online Pass system.

The full FAQ features specs, launch titles, titles in development and more. What's below are just highlights:

What comes in the PS4 box at launch?

You’ll get a PS4 system with a 500GB hard drive, a DUALSHOCK 4 wireless controller, a micro-USB cable for charging the DUALSHOCK 4 controller, a Mono-headset for voice chat, a power cable (1.5m), and an HDMI cable (2.0m).

Will PS4 support 4K content for video or gaming?

Support for high-resolution 4K output for still images and movie content is in consideration, but there are no further details to share at this time. PS4 does not currently support 4K output for games.

Do I need to “reset” my video settings if I change TVs, as on PS3?

This process will not be necessary for PS4.

Will PS4 support any 3D content, including stereoscopic 3D games?

Technically, PS4 supports 3D gameplay at launch in North America, though no launch titles are currently 3D compatible.

What are the benefits of PS4’s new Blu-ray Disc technology?

PS4’s Blu-ray Disc reader operates at a higher speed than the model featured in the PS3 system, and includes a range of Blu-ray Disc sizes.

When playing disc-based games on PS4, do I need to install data to the hard drive?

Yes, all PS4 Blu-ray Disc games must be cached to the hard drive to ensure a smooth gaming experience. However, certain titles may not require you to wait for the game data to be fully cached before starting gameplay. In order to start playing disc-based games, users will need to insert the game disc into PS4 just like on the PS3 system.

What if I’m not able to or don’t want to connect my PS4 system online?

PS4 owners in North America can contact SCEA Consumer Services at (800) 345-7669 to request a Blu-ray activation disc that will be distributed via mail.

Can I listen to audio CDs using PS4?

No, PS4 does not support audio CDs.

Will I be able to install system software update 1.50 via a USB drive?

Yes, you will be able to download the firmware to your PC and transfer it to PS4 using a USB memory stick. However, to use the USB method the first time you take PS4 out of the box and before installing system software update 1.50, you’ll need to enable safe mode. When PS4 is powered off, press and hold the Power Button for seven seconds to enter safe mode. Note: Users should only update using official files downloaded from PlayStation.com.

Which PS4 features will be available at launch in North America?

The majority of new features that have been announced will be available when PS4 launches. These features include background downloads, cross-game voice chat, transitioning to a network based on real-world friends, and live streaming gameplay footage via Ustream and Twitch. Additional PS4 features will be rolled out in phases – please read full details on what’s available following system software update 1.5, and follow PlayStation.Blog and PlayStation.com for further news.

What PS4 software features have been announced, but won’t be available at launch in North America?

Below is an overview of certain features that have been announced that will not be available when PS4 launches in North America.

Share controller via the internet to assist a friend
Suspend/Resume mode
Wireless Stereo Headsets support
Wireless Stereo Headset
Pulse Wired Stereo Headset
Pulse Wireless Stereo Headset Elite Edition

Is there a way to rename my Online ID on PS4?

No. But PS4 does give you the option of allowing your friends to see your real name in addition to your Online ID. You can also choose to import your Facebook photo to be used as your PSN profile picture if you wish.

Does PS4’s graphical user interface have a name like the PS3 system’s “Cross Media Bar”?

PS4’s GUI is called PlayStation Dynamic Menu. We developed the new GUI based on key development ideas for PS4: Simple, Immediate, Social, Integrated, and Personalized.

Will PS4 support media servers or DLNA support in order to stream videos or movies from a home PC?

The PS4 system does not support client functionality for media servers.

Will any PlayStation Store content purchased on PS3 or PS Vita systems be transferable to a PS4 system?

In some cases, yes. For example, a selection of popular digital titles including Flower, flOw, Escape Plan and Sound Shapes will be available to purchase on PS4 after launch. Gamers who purchased these titles for the PS3 or PS Vita systems (the PS Vita system only, in the case of Escape Plan) will be able to download the PS4 versions of these titles, some of which feature enhanced graphics or improved features, to their PS4 systems for no additional charge.

I heard I can “upgrade” certain PS3 games to work on a PS4 system? How does that work?

Yes, for a limited time and with a $9.99 upgrade fee, you can digitally “upgrade” your purchase of three currently supported games: Call of Duty: Ghosts, Assassin’s Creed IV Black Flag, and Battlefield 4 to its full PS4 version. Click here for further details.

Can PS4 and PS3 users play together online, cross-platform?

The functionality is technically possible and some developers may choose to support it for their titles.

Will PS4 allow me to suspend and resume my progress across different games?

This feature will not be available at launch.

Will any PS4 titles use an Online Pass?

First-party titles on PS4 (titles developed by Sony Computer Entertainment) will not use an Online Pass program. When it comes to third-party titles, PlayStation won’t dictate the strategy of publishers concerning Online Pass programs. However, most third parties have phased out the use of Online Pass systems, so they’re unlikely to appear on PS4.

Do PS4 games have regional locks?

In general, neither digital nor disc-based games will be region locked, but PlayStation recommends that all users purchase games at the region of their residence to guarantee the best overall experience and customer service. In certain instances, a software publisher may choose to region lock a game title for specific reasons, but Sony Computer Entertainment expects these instances to be uncommon.

Will PS4 be able to automatically download system software updates?

Yes, system software updates will be automatically downloaded for all users.

Will PS4 be able to automatically download game patches?

Yes, all PS4 users will be able to automatically download and install game patches to their PS4. In addition, PlayStation Plus members will enjoy the ability to have those automatic downloads happen while the system is in standby mode.

Will users have the option of setting the frequency and timings of auto detection, download, and installs?

No.

Can I continue playing on a PS4 while a game patch is being auto detected, downloaded, and installed?

Yes, you can continue playing on PS4 while the game’s patch is being auto detected and downloaded. But depending on the game, you not be able to access online features until all the update data is installed. To install any game patch, users must close the game.

Does PS4 have to be always turned on to automatically download game patches?

No, PlayStation Plus members can take advantage of this feature even when PS4 is in standby mode.

Will PS4 include a web browser?

Yes, the PS4 system comes with a web browser, which is based on webkit technology and is faster and more compatible than the browser that comes with PS3.

Can users switch the light bar off and on?

No. The light bar also serves as an indication of whether the DUALSHOCK 4 controller is turned on. Across different games, the color and brightness of the light bar on the DUALSHOCK 4 controller can be adjusted by game developers, but it cannot be completely switched off.

Will the DUALSHOCK 4 controller’s 3.5mm headset jack support other headsets or headphones?

The PS Vita system’s headset is fully supported. Some other third-party headsets may support basic audio and chat functionality on PS4, but Sony Computer Entertainment cannot guarantee it.

Is it possible to output all game audio through DUALSHOCK 4 controller’s 3.5mm headset jack?

Yes, you can select the Output to Headsets option to either ‘Chat Audio’ or “All Audio.”

Can PS3 and PS4 users voice chat, or video chat together?

PS3 and PS4 users will be able to communicate with each other use text messages, but not video or voice chat.

For cross-game Party Chat, how many players will PS4 support?

As with the PS Vita system, PS4 will support up to eight users for cross-game Party Chat. The Party Chat feature works across both PS4 and PS Vita platforms.

What accessories will be available at launch for PS4?

In addition to the DUALSHOCK 4 wireless controller and PlayStation Camera, North American accessories available at launch will include the PS4 vertical stand ($14.00 MSRP), which enable owners gamers to securely place the PS4 system in the vertical position, and the DUALSHOCK 4 charging cradle ($29.99 MSRP), which enables two controllers to be charged away from the PS4 system.

Will PS3 peripherals such as fighting sticks and steering wheels work with PS4?

Generally speaking, no. However, at launch, users will be able to use these controllers if a specific game title allows it to be used within the game. This decision is upon the game developer and will vary from game to game.

Will Wireless Stereo Headset and PULSE wireless stereo headset – Elite Edition, which are currently sold for PS3, work on PS4 at launch in North America? What about other wireless headsets?

PS4 will support the Pulse Wireless Stereo Headset and Pulse Wireless Stereo Headset – Elite Edition following an upcoming PS4 system software update. Existing wireless headsets from third-party companies that use a Bluetooth connection will not be supported on PS4, though most USB headsets will be supported following PS4 system software update 1.50.

Can I use the DUALSHOCK 3 controller on PS4?

No, PS4 does not support the DUALSHOCK 3 controller.

Can I use my PS3 Blu-ray remote control on PS4?

No, PS4 does not support the Blu-ray remote control for the PS3.

Does PS4 support the PlayStation Move motion controller?

Yes. Developers will be able to create PS4 titles that use the PS Move controller, with Octodad and Sports Friends being two upcoming examples. However, PS3 titles that use the PS Move controller will not be supported on PS4.

How does Remote Play using PS4 and PS Vita systems improve on the current system between PS3 and PS Vita systems?

Remote Play between PS4 and PS Vita systems leverages Gaikai’s proprietary game streaming technology. PS4 supports this technology on a system level in order to reduce the burden for developers. All activities performed during Remote Play will occur on the PS4 system, such as purchasing add-ons, earning Trophies, and saving game progress.

Are there any other cross-functional capabilities between PS Vita and PS4 users?

Players can voice chat or text chat between PS4 and PS Vita systems using the Party application, even during gameplay. Also, users can browse and compare each other’s Trophies. You can also send and receive text messages between PS Vita and PS4.

How many users can play online multiplayer modes on a single PS4 system set as “Primary” by a PS Plus member?

All users can play online multiplayer modes. Up to four users can log in simultaneously to a single PS4 system, and all will have access to multiplayer as long as PS4 is set as “Primary” by a PS Plus member.

How many local accounts does PS4 support?

PS4 supports up to 16 local accounts, in addition to temporary guest accounts.

What is PlayAsYouDownload? Will all PS4 games support this function?

PlayAsYouDownload is a new feature for the PS4 system that speeds access to games downloaded from PlayStation Store. Supported titles will be playable after users download a portion of the data, while the rest of the game is downloaded in the background during actual gameplay. All titles are compatible this function, but certain titles may not support it at launch in North America.

How much will I need to download before I can start playing with PlayAsYouDownload?

The portion of a game that must be downloaded before gameplay begins will vary title by title, as will the time that it takes to download that initial portion. Users will be able to see when they are able to start playing by an indicator on the download progress meter. Certain titles, such as Killzone: Shadow Fall, will enable you to pick which mode to start downloading first, such as single-player or multiplayer.

Am I able to buy PlayStation Store content from other regions?

We recommend that people buy from the PlayStation Store in the region in which they signed up in order to ensure the best experience and customer support.

What is PlayStation App?

This new application from Sony Computer Entertainment will enable iOS and many Android-based devices to become second screens. Once installed on these devices, users can purchase PS4 games while away from home and download it directly to their home PS4. Depending on the device’s operating system, version, or other conditions, some users may not be able to use the application.

Are users able to record, distribute or stream any gameplay video?

No. Users may not be able to record certain areas within the game. Developers can select the area of restriction, and what will be restricted will depend on game titles. In these cases, recording will be temporarily suspended during the scene.

Can I share my game videos on YouTube?

No. At launch, PS4 users will be able to use the Share button on the DUALSHOCK 4 controller to upload gameplay videos to their Facebook account, or to stream live gameplay to Ustream or Twitch. PS4 owners can follow PlayStation.Blog and PlayStation.com for further news on other services to come after launch.

Does PS4 support external HDMI-based game capture devices?

PS4 will allow the use of external HDMI-based capture devices following an upcoming system software update — please follow PlayStation.Blog and PlayStation.com for news following the launch of PS4.

Source: PlayStation Blog

Author: Brian Hoss

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Tags: games, PS4, PLaystation, Sony (all tags)