Sony today provided more details on the upcoming major 4.00 update for the PlayStation 4. In a post on the PlayStation Blog, Sony's John Koller outlined some of the new features for the update, which includes a UI refresh, more organization tools in the form of folders, updates to the Quick Menu screen and more.
The update is codenamed Shingen. People in the public beta program selected for the beta should be on the lookout now for an email with details on how to get started.
First, the PS4's main user interface is changing to become "more refined and easier to use," Koller said. The overall look will remain the same, but "a lot of adjustments and improvements" have been made.
"That includes some changes you may notice right away, like new system backgrounds and a revised What's New tab, to smaller changes like updated popup notifications and redesigned system icons," Koller explained.
PS4 4.00 also makes changes to the Quick Menu to make it "faster and easier to use." With the update applied, the menu will only cover a portion of the screen, so that you don't need to completely leave gameplay to access it.
Here are some other changes, as explained by Koller:
"We've added several new items to the Quick Menu, letting you quickly get info without having to [go] back to the home screen. You can see the online status of your friends, and shortcuts to quickly access your Party, Favorite Groups, Communities and more. You can also customize the Quick Menu, removing or adding items as you see fit."
The PS4's Share Menu has also been updated.
"Like the Quick Menu, it only covers a portion of the screen. It will save the last social network you shared video clips or screenshots to, making the process of sharing a screenshot or video a bit faster and more streamlined," Koller said.
Also related to the PS4's Share functionality is that Twitter videos uploaded from PS4 can now be 140 seconds long; the previous limit was 10 seconds.
PS4 4.00 also adds much-requested folders to the PS4 in an effort to help users organize their content better.
"With this update, we're adding functionality to create folders on PS4's content launcher and Library," Koller explained. "This will help collect your favorite games and select apps in one place for quick and easy access."
There are also some "pretty big changes" coming to the PS4 Library. There will now be a tab called Purchased, which shows everything you own across games, apps, demos and so on. The Games and Applications tabs will focus on the content you have installed, instead of absolutely everything you own.
"This should help declutter your library, and make it faster to find the content you're looking for," Koller said. "There are some new sorting tools for your Library as well. You'll be able to sort content by purchase date or install status, and search for specific games and apps via text input."
Additionally, PS4 4.00 adds the ability to view your Trophies offline.
"You'll see a new 'offline mode' option if your system is unable to connect to the network, letting you view your entire Trophy collection without an Internet connection," Koller said.
The update also adds a button that lets you see the content of a Hidden Trophy. By default, the Trophy will remain hidden, but this gives users the option to display its name and information. Additionally, the new update changes the icons that show the rarity level of a Trophy.
"Instead of four boxes that fill, the icon looks like a pyramid with the ultra-rare Trophies at the top," Koller said about the upcoming change.
Lastly (for now at least), PS4 4.00 changes the look of the User Profile page in an attempt to make it easier to see important information right away.
"For instance, you can now see your Trophy progress compared with another player right from their profile," Koller said. "You can also add a background image to your own profile -- perhaps a screenshot you took in one of your favorite games."
It's important to note that these are features included in the PS4 4.00 update beta alone, while the final release will have "even more." Koller said fans should stay tuned for additional information in the coming weeks. That's also when Sony will talk about a launch date, Koller said.
The beta is set to begin in "early August," and you have until then to sign up to participate. You can do so here. The only information you need to provide is your PlayStation Network username.
Sony last added major new features in April with the 3.50 update. That introduced communities, a dedicated PlayStation Plus hub, the ability to share video clips to Twitter and more. It also offered some undocumented features, such as a USB music player and support for 4TB hard drives.