PS4 features turned off for European gamers

Sony has turned off a couple of PS4 social features for European customers to avoid server problems on launch day.

As gamers race to get their hands on a new PlayStation 4 today, Sony has turned off a couple of PS4 features for European customers to avoid problems on launch day.

Sony announced in a blog post that it's turned off the social features to make sure the PSN online service isn't overwhelmed. The disabled features will be restored "a few days later."

The features that have been turned off are What's New, where you see what your friends are up to on their PS4, and the Content Information Screen, where you see how your friends are doing with a specific game.

Sony hastens to add that you can still play online multiplayer games, win trophies, share videos and live broadcast your gaming adventures.

The American launch of the PS4 prompted what Sony called "an unprecedented influx of players onto PSN." A similar rush is expected today with the European launch, so Sony is worried the crowd of gamers could overwhelm servers.

Online connections for games add an exciting extra dimension to gaming, but the surge of people signing up on launch day can spell disaster: Sony clearly wants to avoid the debacle that followed the launch of EA's PC game SimCity , which required gamers to register online before they could start playing -- leading to a stampede that crushed EA's servers for several days.

Of course, Sony has managed to spread out the number of people logging on to PSN by the simple expedient of not having enough stock , with many shops selling out of the console -- although pricier bundles are still available -- and even people who pre-ordered discovering that they won't receive their console for Christmas.

Have you plumped for PS4 or bagged an Xbox One? Tell me your thoughts in the comments or on our button-bashing Facebook page.

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About the author

Rich Trenholm is a senior editor at CNET where he covers everything from phones to bionic implants. Based in London since 2007, he has travelled the world seeking out the latest and best consumer technology for your enjoyment.

 

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