PS4 Update 2.57 is stable, but here’s what PS4 Update 3.0 should be
Sony just released PS4 update version 2.57, which is aimed at increasing system stability. That’s great, but it’s pretty boring, especially on the heels of a rather exciting E3.
This is the official list of features brought to us by PS4 firmware update 2.57:
About PlayStation®4 system software version 2.57
Main features in version 2.57
- System software stability during use of some features has been improved
As you can see, it’s only one bullet point toting stability improvements for ‘some’ features.
I’m a big fan of stability and I’m not complaining about this update, but the PS4 System Software is in need of an overall if it’s going to continue to dominate this console generation.
Here’s my wish list for PS4 firmware update 3.0:
User experience overhaul
The current PS4 dashboard works, but it does nothing to delight its users. Many Sony fans, including myself, feel that it’s a step back from the XrossMediaBar# that has exists in a variety of sony products since 2006.
These are a few enhancements I’d like to see in the current interface (though I’m still open to a complete redesign and possibly going back to the very successful XrossMediaBar):
- The games and applications Library needs to be quickly accessible from the moment you power/wake up your PS4
- The Library itself needs to be sortable and customizable by the user (nameable folders would be nice)
- Let the user decide how many recently open games and applications are displayed to reduce (or increase) clutter
- A better way to manage cloud storage for saved games across all devices and a clear list of what is and is not backing up to the cloud
- The game or application that is currently running should be clearly marked when not selected
- When hovering over the Settings menu, recently or commonly accessed settings should appear in a quick menu
- The Download list should be treated like notifications and be able to be purged. Purging the list now actually deletes everything, which is a strange interaction
PlayStation 4 Camera and Voice Commands
The PlayStation 4 Camera is a great accessory that allows you to issue voice commands and log into your PS4 using facial recognition, but it could be even better.
Here are a few more functions that would add a lot of value to the PS4 camera:
- Allow the camera’s voice command prompt to be initiated along with the command without pausing between the initiation and the desired command. Right now, if you want to give your PS4 a voice command you need to initiate the order by saying ‘PlayStation’ then stopping and waiting for it to acknowledge you and then you can issue your command. This makes for a cumbersome interaction and it needs to be streamlined
- Add more commands. The list of useable commands is very limited; it would be nice to jump to any part of the PS4 dashboard and sub menus simply by asking the camera to take you there
- Allow users to wake up the PS4 when it’s in rest mode via voice command
- The PS4 camera is capable of 3D capture (in order to be more accurate when capturing motion); add some cool gesture-based commands to do simple things like navigating the Dashboard and Library
- Let us play, pause, and skip back/forward during video playback using voice commands
- The option to calibrate the microphone array would probably help those of you with thick accents or noisy environments
Here are a few more minor updates I’d like to see in the PS4 firmware 3.0 update:
- Show us the preview images for Blu-rays that have been inserted into the PS4; right now you just see a generic disc
- Give me something like Nintendo’s Miiverse# that is dedicated to social content about the PS4. Heck I’d even be happy with a dedicated Twitter list of game developers and studios
- Add a Wii U style activity log that shows me exactly what game are sucking up my time
It’s now part of the norm for video game console makers to release firmware updates regularly that focus on “stability”, and we should be thankful for that. Often these updates are labeled stability, but are really focused on combating hacking threats and software piracy, both of which continue to be a major issues for Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo. That being said, nothing creates a loyal customer like adding more value to a product months and even years after a product has been purchased.
That’s how Sony won my loyalty with the PlayStation 3, and I’m hoping it will do it again in this generation by taking a great console and making it even greater.
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