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PS5
Opinion

PS5 Needs to fix this one issue


We know the PS5 is coming and it’ll be packing serious heat. However, dear Sony, we need to talk about something that’s gotta go.

Sony and Microsoft have both shown just a few of the cards they’re holding for the upcoming next-gen consoles. These two machines, seem pretty darn similar in terms of the hardware specs that have been revealed so far. PS5 and Project Scarlet both running 8-Core Zen 2 CPU, a massive leap in capability to the current Jaguar based CPUs. Both will have custom fast SSD’s, both Ray Tracing support. Both sporting Navi-based GPU’s with Native 4K + 8K support. It’s looking rather close. However, I’m a tad worried about Sony’s machine in one particular area. To get the full picture we need to go back a few weeks where my story begins.

There it was, after putting off this purchase for quite some time, I’d finally pulled there trigger. A couple of days later, they’ve arrived. This would make my gaming life hugely better and I couldn’t wait to get started. I’d made 2 very important purchases for both of my consoles. A 2 TB external drive for my Xbox One X and a 3 TB External for my PS4 Pro. After basically running on the raggedy edge of not having enough disk space for some time, this necessary purchase will solve all those issues. First, the Xbox, which previously had a 1 TB external connected to it.

What stood before me is a time sinkhole I was about to jump into. It was first in line for the dreaded Game Data transfer from one External HDD to another. But shockingly, it was super easy. Microsoft had let Xbox handle multiple HDDs with ease. It picked up the second Drive, formatted to the correct Xbox format and then off I went to the races. Merely selected all of the data from 1 TB and set it off to the 2 TB. I barely had to do any work, just needed some patience while the data transferred. Great Job Microsoft, you nailed that process.

And then, the PS4. Oh dear, immediately an issue presented itself before I could get started. It too had an external 1 TB. But a limitation presented itself. Turns out, the PS4 cannot handle 2 external drives connected at the same time. The ease of process I experienced with the Xbox had simply vanished. So what to do, what to do? First up, deleting tons of games that I have on Disc from the internal 2 TB. Basically, free up enough space for all the games from the 1 TB to fit in the internal drive. Oh boy, was that a nightmare, but it wasn’t over. After the deletion, a massive wait time begins for the external data to be transferred to the internal data.

Success, I’m now free to format the new 3 TB Drive to PS4 format and rinse repeat the transfer process. This time, the other way round where the internal data is now being sent to the external drive. Several micro-lifetimes later, success. But oh no, we are not yet done. Remember all those disc-based titles I deleted earlier on, yep you guessed it, I have to go disc by disc installing each of them back into the PS4 and re-update every last game.

And therein lies the major issue with PS4 that absolutely needs to be resolved for PS5. Hard disk management is abysmal on PlayStation in comparison to how seamlessly and easily Microsoft handles it on the Xbox console. Keep in mind, I absolutely dislike the Xbox UI and yet found dealing with multiple drives and transferring data on the system far superior to my nightmarish experience on the PS4. External drive support is basically a given for next-gen consoles. I don’t see Microsoft taking a step back from their current excellent implementation.

Sony on the other hand desperately needs to be taking a page or two from the Xbox team to ensure smoother user experience. There’s no doubt in my mind that both Scarlet and PS5 game sizes will be massive. SSDs larger than 2 TB in the stock consoles is highly unlikely which means gamers, like myself, who have massive libraries will be relying on external drives. Doubly sure since PS4 games will be loaded in that console thanks to backwards compatibility. Please, Sony! Fix this one issue that seems to be glossed over far too easily. Dare I say it, you will change our PlayStation worlds. Just saying!