Sony has officially detailed some of the neat features coming with the next PlayStation 4 (PS4) firmware update, codenamed "Sasuke," and external hard drive support is among the highlights.

Downloading a game for the PS4 can take a while and many modern games come with impressive file sizes. Even games bought on a disk still need quite a lot of space for installation, and some require several GB of hard drive space.

Sony PS4 External Hard Drive Support

With this in mind, Sony has finally announced a highly requested feature that will make life easier for avid gamers: support for external hard drives.

"It's easy to upgrade the HDD that came with your PS4, but if you're still looking for more storage space on the console, we've got you covered," says Sony.

The upcoming PS4 update 4.50 will support for external hard drive support, enabling the console to recognize external storage that supports USB 3.0. According to Sony's announcement, the PS4 is compatible with external hard drives of up to 8 TB. With this support, users will be able to download and install games directly onto the hard drive.

"With this update, you have the option to store content to an external HDD. Just plug a USB 3.0 HDD into your PS4, and voilà, you now have more space on the console," adds Sony.

Other Update Features

In addition to external hard drive support, the upcoming update will also bring custom wallpapers, allowing users to use an in-game screenshot, for instance, as the background image for the console's home screen.

The update also aims to improve visibility with various effects such as drop-shadows on texts and a dimmed function area, which should enhance the visibility of the system icons and text even if the background image is very bright. For further customization, users can also edit their screenshots in Sharefactory.

Sony also touts a quick menu refresh to make it "more accessible," covering a smaller portion of the gameplay screen and offering quick access to Party features. To access the quick menu, users have to hold down the PS button on the console's controller.

The update will further bring a simplified, single notification list that will include information on downloads, uploads and game alerts. Users will also be able to post straight into the Activity Feed.

Beta Testing First

Lastly, the PS4 update 4.50 will allow users to view 3D movies in stereoscopic 3D with the PlayStation VR. Sony adds that the update will include even more features, but it will offer more information, including the release date, in the following weeks.

For now, update 4.50 is in testing in Sony's PlayStation 4 beta program. Starting on Feb. 3, selected beta testers get an early peek at these upcoming PS4 features. Not all PS4 users who signed up for the beta will be selected for the sneak peek into "Sasuke." Those who are selected will receive an email with detailed instructions on how to download the beta software update and get started with the new features.

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