Setup & Performance

Patches & Installs

We found the initial setup of the PlayStation 4 to be a relatively painless process. Upon first booting up the system, we had to download an initial patch to connect the system to PSN.

As of the time of this review, that patch is about 300 MB and took less than 15 minutes to download and install (though more crowded servers on launch day could slow that considerably).

Once the system is up to date, connecting to an existing PlayStation Network ID is a smooth process, taking just a few minutes. This brings in all the friends and trophies lists from the PS3 and Vita.

The console will also ask you if you'd like to make your real name accessible to specified friends. This Real Name functionality is a great addition and doesn't feel overly cumbersome, despite essentially requiring both parties to accept.

When PlayStation Network is humming along and working as expected, it's smooth and downloads games quickly.

If you find yourself at a friend's house, you can opt for a "guest" account. This will let you sign into your own PSN account, but not have to worry about leaving secure data behind when you log off. A handy addition, especially for dorm dwellers with cagey roommates.

Installing our first games, both from disc or through PSN, was mostly painless, though we did run into some connectivity issues that resulted in downloaded games being inaccessible until the console re-connected to the network. But when PlayStation Network is humming along and working as expected, it's smooth and downloaded games quickly. It's just not terribly easy to navigate and will definitely take some getting used to, with vague iconography to guide you.