PS5 Won’t Allow SSD Storage Expansion at Launch, Feature Coming in a Future Update

Nathan Birch
Playstation 5 system update 20.02-02.26.00

With the launch of the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, players are really going to have to start thinking about storage again. Both consoles feature speedy solid-state drives, which will greatly reduce load times, but the days of expanding your storage by plugging in any old portable hard drive are over. In fact, it seems you won’t be able to expand your PS5’s storage at all at launch. That's a bit of a potential issue, as the PS5’s built-in SSD offers 825 GB of storage, with only about 670 GB of that being useable for games.

Microsoft and Sony are taking different approaches to storage expansion for their next-gen consoles. The Xbox Series X and S will offer easy plug-and-play SSD expansion cards, with options from various manufacturers eventually being offered (a $220 Seagate 1 TB SSD expansion card will be your only choice at launch). Meanwhile, the PS5 will be compatible with regular off-the-shelf M.2 SSDs, but you’ll have to open up your console’s casing to install them.

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Although, again, don’t expect to be able to expand your PS5’s storage out of the box. The feature will apparently be disabled at launch, with Sony telling The Verge that the option will be “reserved for a future update.”

PS5 architect Mark Cerny previously hinted this might be the case, as the PS5 features a cutting-edge SSD faster than the large majority of the ones you’ll find on the shelves right now. In order to work with the PS5, an SSD needs to offer at least 5.5GB/sec of bandwidth over a PCIe Gen4 connection, and while there are a few options that fast becoming available, it’s likely Sony will want to put them through some sort of approval process before allowing them to be used.

The PlayStation 5 launches on November 12 or November 19, depending on whether you live in North America/Australia or Europe. What do you think? Is not being able to expand your PS5 storage at first a big deal to you?

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