PS4's PlayGo background downloading & installing explained. Why next-gen won't waste a second of your gaming time

24th Apr 2013 | 14:45

Lead system architect Mark Cerny has explained more about PlayGo, the system which lets PS4 download games while you're playing and means installing disks won't get in the way.

playgo ps4 explained

Lead system architect Mark Cerny has explained more about PlayGo, the system which lets PS4 download games while you're playing and means installing disks won't get in the way.

PS4's background downloading & installing explained

The PlayGo system means you only have to download, "a portion of the overall data," before you start playing. As you do, the rest downloads in the background. There's also a second chip that functions with the PS4 in a low power mode to download things like system updates, patches and so on.

"We also have the ability to shut off everything except power to the RAMs, which is how we leave your game session suspended," explains Cerny, referring to the PS4's ability to stop and start games without saving. In that state only the, "secondary custom chip, system memory, hard drive and Ethernet," parts of the console are powered. Effectively your PS4 is shut down overall, only using the bits it needs to preserve you game's progress or download data.

"After an hour or two, the game is on
the hard drive, you have dramatically
quicker loading and you have the ability
to do some truly high-speed streaming"

An interesting part of the PS4's PlayGo set up is how it will compensate for Blu-ray speeds and install times. Apparently games will copy data from the Blu-ray disk to the hard drive to get you started. It'll then use any spare time the system has to copy over the remaining data. Cerny says, "What that means is after an hour or two, the game is on the hard drive, and you have access, you have dramatically quicker loading... And you have the ability to do some truly high-speed streaming."

Thanks Gamasutra.

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