about the past year, more next-gen consoles are in the hands of gamers who have had trouble getting hold of them. I was elated when I got my hands on a retail PS5 with no markup, and have been living in a house with two PlayStations ever since. But I was sad that my PS4 had to sit idle after making room for its replacement.
My trusty PS4 had served me well for many years and I had already upgraded its internal drive to an SSD during the PS5 dry season. Could you follow the actions of the masses and sell it? Yes, but how could it bring him such disgrace? He was still of great value to me, not just to others, and I knew there were plenty of ways I could continue to bring glory to my home as console emeritus. If that sounds familiar, here’s how you can make the most of yours too.
If you have other TVs or monitors around the house, relocating your PS4 will be the precursor to the benefits I’ll mention below. I moved mine into my office, where my gaming equipment is also set up. I know more than a few people who have consoles in their bedrooms, making it easier to enjoy a few games before falling asleep. (Although, to be fair, screens and sleep are a bad combination.) The children’s room, whose little inhabitants may not need all the power of a next-generation console, is another option. Maybe it becomes a portable console for family trips, or just for your own travels. Wherever you take it, you will get a lot out of it.
Enjoy the benefits of PS Plus
If you have a PlayStation Plus subscription, those benefits extend to your PS account, not just a single console. This means that your PS4, even if it’s not your main console, can download and stream content while connecting to the same cloud you use on your main PS5. I want to play a little Spiderman: Miles Morales in your living room? Excellent! You can continue it elsewhere on your PS4, with your save game intact.
Make it a PS5 Jr.
Following the launch of the PlayStation 5, Sony added a feature to the PS4 to stream directly from it, giving you a second console to access the content that’s on your shiny new PS5. Using the Remote Play options in system settings, you can pair the two consoles together. I’m not going to lie, it’s not *perfect,* the controls aren’t exact, but I haven’t had too many problems. Since you’ll be using a Sony DualShock 4 (or equivalent) controller, you won’t have all the capabilities that the PS5 DualSense controller comes equipped with. But so far, aside from playing the flute on the PS5 edition of Ghost of TsushimaI have been fine.
Turn it into a streaming media box
PS4 apps and games will remain downloadable for a long time, which means your media and streaming apps like Netflix, Hulu, HBO Max, Amazon Prime Video, Disney+, Apple TV+, Paramount+ and the rest can turn your PS4 into a solid entertainment hub for streaming and local content.
My favorite media app on the PS4 is Plex, which allows you to connect to a local Plex media server (if you have one) to access all the content on your local network. Because I’m that level of a geek, I rip most of my DVD/Blu-ray collection to a digital library that sits on a media server in my office. Using Plex, all of that, plus other local videos I have (OK, they’re all jiujitsu instructional) is available to play on my PS4.
And it’s not just video. The PS4 is also well equipped to handle music and podcasts, including the soundtracks that come with your special edition game purchases that you really can’t easily transfer or play anywhere else (which is crazy, because where you really want it is in your car or on a CD or literally anywhere else).
But I digress.
Physical media is also not off the table. If you have your music, movies, or even photos on external USB drives, you can simply plug and play. A word of warning: the PS4 doesn’t support NTFS, the default file system used by Windows PCs, so physical media will need to be formatted to FAT32 or exFAT before copying your music and movies. And if you’re a disc fanatic who likes to listen to all the bonus audio tracks and bonus content on the disc, it’s still one of the best Blu-ray players you can get.