PS4: Everything you need to know
The PlayStation 4 is finally available. Here's the quick skinny on what you need to know about Sony's just-released game console.
2. For early adopters, Sony is throwing in some nice freebies, including a free month of PlayStation Plus, free month of Sony Music Unlimited, and a $10 PlayStation Store credit.
3. Unfortunately, you can't play PS3 games on the PS4. The same goes for most peripherals. Except for the PS Move, none of your PS3 peripherals (controllers, etc.) are compatible with the PS4. The same goes for older Bluetooth headsets and headphones, at least for now.
4. The PS4 can play Blu-rays and DVDs, but not CDs or MP3s (for now), and it currently won't read any files from a USB external storage device (via its two USB ports) except system software patches (you have to put the PS4 in a special "safe mode" to do system updates via a USB thumb drive). That's a serious bummer. At launch, it also cannot play 3D Blu-ray movies (nor can the). Note that the older PS3 offers support for CDs, MP3s, 3D Blu-ray playback, and reads files from external storage devices.
5. The PS4 and
6. If you've already purchased PS3 versions of select titles, you canfor just $10 more. This only applies to a handful of games.
7. To play multiplayer games online, you'll need a PS Plus account ($50 a year), which is a departure from the PS3's free online play model.
8. However, unlike the Xbox 360 and Xbox One, you don't need a PS Plus account to use the entertainment apps like Netflix or Crackle.
9. There are 13 entertainment apps, including Netflix and Crackle. Amazon and YouTube are no-shows for now. A browser is on board, but it doesn't play YouTube videos. (For a complete rundown of apps on PS4 and Xbox One, check David Katzmaier's " " post.)
10. DLNA streaming is not available at launch.
11. The PS4 includes a 500GB hard drive, but you can replace/upgrade it yourself -- and it's pretty easy to do.
12. The PS4 has a "near-perfect" controller (according to our
13. You can charge the PS4's controllers while the console is in standby mode (unlike with the PS3).
14. Sony has an upgraded camera accessory (the PlayStation Camera). It's not as essential to the system as the Xbox One's Kinect accessory is, but it adds support for motion control, as well the ability to control your system with voice commands. The camera can also identify who's using the system and log you in. The Kinect offers all those features (and more), and no motion controllers are required since the Kinect can interpret your hand gestures.
15. The PS4 has a tighter link to to the PlayStation Vita. You can play PS4 games on your Vita using, a remote/mirror setting that and turns it into a second screen. We experienced virtually no lag in our tests.
16. Like the PS3, there's no IR port (it uses Bluetooth), so you can't control the PS4
17. The PS4 has a 15-minute cache, so you can go back and grab clips and share them on social media sites. In fact, the controller has a built-in "share" button.
18. On launch day (November 15), 26 games are scheduled to be available.
19. Sony has launched a newfor iOS and Android users. It allows you to use your iOS or Android device as a second screen and remote control to display and manage the action from compatible PS4 games, shop at the PlayStation Store, and view PlayStation manuals and system guides.
20. Unlike the Xbox One, the PS4 doesn't feature any sort of-- it's called OneGuide on the Xbox One -- that allows you to switch easily from watching TV to playing games. On the Xbox One, you can also play a game and display live TV in a small panel on the side (Xbox One's "snap" feature lets you run two apps at once, with one of them in a picture-in-picture window). As the Xbox One is more sophisticated out of the gate.
21. You can stand the PS4 up vertically, but the console doesn't ship with a stand -- it's an optional accessory.
22. Check out CNET's