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PS3 firmware with BD-Live support now available

Sony releases firmware update to the PlayStation 3 right on schedule, making it the first Blu-ray player to support BD-Live.

The world's first 2.0-compatible Blu-ray player.

The PlayStation 3 is the first Blu-ray player to support BD-Live functionality, thanks to a firmware update available today. Officially announced just last week, the update (version 2.20) was released right on schedule, and is now available as a free download to PS3 owners directly through the console's onscreen interface. Once installed, it allows the PS3's to access Internet-connected BD-Live content available on some discs. The list of compatible discs is currently minimal--just War and Saw IV available now, plus The Sixth Day and Walk Hard following on April 8--and the first round of BD-Live content doesn't seem to be very diverting. But as the list of supporting titles grows--and, ideally, the BD-Live content becomes more compelling--look for players that don't support Profile 2.0 compatibility to be confined to the clearance shelves. The PS3 remains the best bet for Blu-ray shoppers, even if they have no interest in using its gaming capabilities.

In addition to adding BD-Live support, the firmware upgrade includes a few other PS3 fixes and enhancements, including better DivX support and PSP integration. However, despite widespread rumors to the contrary, the update did not include the ability to copy portable versions of Blu-ray movies to the PSP. Audiophiles are also still holding out for an update that would add DTS-HD Master Audio decoding to the PS3, although Sony has not announced any plans to include that functionality.

So, what do you think, PS3 owners? Excited about the latest upgrade? Happy to be owning the best Blu-ray player out there? Or do you still want more? And for those who haven't yet taken the Blu-ray plunge: does this upgrade make the PS3 a more compelling purchase? Share your thoughts below.