Posted: Aug 19 2014
by: Neal Haworth

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Sony PlayStation 4 Update To Receive Share Play

The PlayStation 4 may outsell the Xbox One by 2-1, but Microsoft is credited with releasing more updates and improvements to its console than Sony. Well, this may soon change, as Sony is preparing to release a major "2.0" update to its system this fall. Included in the update is a new game-sharing feature known as Share Play.

So, just what in the heck is Share Play? Sony is calling it a "virtual couch," as it allows gamers to play games with friends over the PlayStation Network. Assuming you have a game that's compatible with two or more players, you can send an invite to one of your friends through the PlayStation Network. Once he or she accepts the invite, they will join your game to team up with multiplayer action.

Here's the real beauty of this new feature: friends can join your games even if they don't own a copy of it. Using Sony's cloud-based technology, the game is streamed to the guest's PlayStation 4 console, allowing him or her to play without a copy of the game.

"The best way to think about Share Play is like a 'virtual couch.' PlayStation 4 will create an online local co-op experience by allowing you to invite a friend to join your game—even when they don’t own a copy of it. With this first-of-its-kind feature, you’ll be able to play games with a friend just as if you were together in the same room," wrote Scott McCarthy, Director, Product Planning & Software Innovation, SCEA, on the PlayStation blog. "With Share Play, you can even jump into a game to assist a friend. For example, if there is part of a game that you can’t quite finish, you can invite a friend to take over your controls."

There's one major hurdle that's preventing Sony's Share Play from offering the ultimate multiplayer gaming experience: it's limited to 60-minute sessions. Yep, your friends can only join your games for a maximum of 1 hour before the system gives them the boot. Why is Sony limiting the Share Play sessions to just 60 minutes? From a business perspective, it's probably a smart idea to place at least some limitations on this ingenious new technology. If gamers were allowed to share their games with no restrictions, it could discourage people from buying new games.

Share Play is expected to be released with the PlayStation 4's 2.0 update this fall.

What do you think about Share Play?

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