PS4 UI and Social Features, Shuhei Yoshida on Ease of Use

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PS4 UI and Social Features, Shuhei Yoshida on Ease of Use

One of the most memorable moments from our Gamescom press conference was surely the sight of Worldwide Studios President Shuhei Yoshida taking the gathered audience on a tour of the new PS4 user interface, live on stage, from the comfort of a big leather armchair.

If you haven’t seen it yet, please do take a look at the video below to see him hop seamlessly from the PS4 home screen into a livecast of a friend playing Killzone: Shadow Fall, before joining that game and then, finally, sending a screenshot of the session straight out to his Twitter feed.

PlayStation.Blog caught up with Yoshida-san the morning after the show to go into a little more detail on the PS4 UI, and find out what he’s most excited for players to see come November 15th.

PlayStation.Blog: Obviously not many people have used the PS4 UI yet, so can you tell us a little bit about how it feels?

Shuhei Yoshida: What I showed was only a small portion of the UI. Obviously the system software is still in development. We really wanted to show off the social aspect of the UI. The minute you boot up, you’ll see all the information about games you own, what your friends are doing, whether there’s any new DLC coming out, or if your friends have shared a video or screenshot. And you can also spectate anyone playing PS4.

The demonstration was to show that my friend Eric was playing Killzone. I was able to spectate, but also join the game. All PS4 games allow you to take screenshots, so I pressed the share button to automatically take one. And PS4 also records the last 15 minutes of gameplay, so I had the choice of either uploading the screenshot or the video. So I tweeted out the screenshot to my actual Twitter account. And if I chose to, I could have posted the video to my Facebook. It’s very easy to do.

“It’s very easy to do.”

PSB: We’ve increased the friend list limit to 2,000 with PS4. As someone who really enjoys social media, are you looking forward to that huge influx of new friend requests that will surely come on launch day?

Yoshida: I have maxed out all the friends lists of all the consoles I have! The thing about friends lists though, is that you might meet a person in a game and make friends with them, but then after a couple of months you might forget who they are. So I’m really excited to be able to add the real names of friends, like on Facebook, so you can see who that person is and bring your own friend network onto your console.

Of course, it’s optional, so you don’t have to do it if you don’t like it, but I’m the kind of person who enjoys a game much more if I know who I’m playing with. So I’m really looking forward to this!

PSB: What aspect of PS4 are you most excited for gamers to discover when they purchase their new system?

Yoshida: The discoverability of things. It’s like checking your social media every day. I really like that people can find out about new games, information, and what their friends are doing, without even booting the game. For example, you can check out whether you have had new challenges from friends from the home screen of every game. All the important information is presented to you immediately. The same game might come out on PS3 and PS4, but playing the game on PS4 will be much more fun, I would expect.

“The indie movement is so exciting to me.”

PSB: You’ve been with PlayStation for many years and witnessed all our major platform launches. With a few months left until the release date, how are you feeling about the PS4 launch, compared with previous platforms’ launch dates?

Yoshida: The indie movement is so exciting to me. It really reminds me of when we were working on the original PlayStation. Back then, PlayStation really expanded the audience for gaming and brought in a lot of new developers. Lots of unique, interesting games came out of nowhere.

I feel a similar kind of vibe and passion from those indie people today. I’m so excited this time. It was scary going into PS3, actually. Everything was going bigger, but this time around it’s a really great combination of big and better games, and smaller, really creative, interesting titles.

PSB: Are there any indie titles in particular you’re really looking forward to playing on PS4?

Yoshida: I’m always a huge fan of Octodad. I was watching the live demo before the press conference and was like “Let me play!” And The Witness. It wasn’t in the show, but I can’t wait to play the game when it comes out.

PSB: While we’re on the topic of games, I know everyone is always interested to find out what you’re playing at present. Can you offer our readers three recommendations that you think they should check out?

Yoshida: Along with our huge catalogue from Worldwide Studios, Dragon’s Crown is a game I’m playing and really digging. It’s a very immersive, action brawler RPG with beautiful graphics. I’m playing on PS Vita, and it’s very beautiful on the PS Vita screen. I highly recommend it.

I still haven’t been able to make huge progress on Hotline Miami. It’s very hard! But it’s so addictive! I really like it. It’s like playing Demon’s Souls or Dark Souls — you have to die a lot to learn how to play.

The other recommendation… maybe Velocity Ultra? That’s so great. Or PixelJunk Monsters Ultimate, perhaps. These are all games on PS Vita, but Dragon’s Crown and Hotline Miami you can also play on PS3.

Comments are closed.


  • i dont understand why no one has told us if ps home will be on the ps4. you all talk about the social features, will home woud be great social networking. so plase can someone tell us if we have home on ps4

  • Terrific read…

    See, this is exactly why PlayStation is the only place to play. I am getting more and more excited for the PS4 everyday, a little more than two months away …can’t wait!!! this is going to be one heck of an awesome fall and winter for gaming :-)

  • Please more AAA titles.

  • I am also happy to see more indie games making their way to the incoming systems….. social gaming, however, isn’t my thing… I don’t care to share pictures, videos, play games with ‘friends’ i dont really have… i dont care to watch anyone else playing a game.. i just want great games i can play on my own, as i see fit… keep those coming and i will be a continuing customer..

  • I can’t wait!!! BTW, they still haven’t answer if will be available to use external capture card or not.

  • @1 I think that’s a given, but I’m still waiting for an announcement.

  • That’s great and all, but will you also be catering to those of us who don’t care about Facebook or Twitter? Would be nice to upload videos to YouTube instead. Maybe even quickly edit them right from the game. Also, while the real-name feature sounds neat, I’ve always thought it would be nice to have a tag for each friend that you could use any way you wanted. I would use it to identify the person by which game I met them in, or which website they found me on, etc. Pretty useless on PS3 since all you can rely upon is messages and even then they get deleted once your box fills up.
    The system needs to incorporate privacy features as well. More often than not I wouldn’t care, but it would be nice to have an option not to be spectated by certain people. Maybe not by anyone. Or even not have certain people/anyone know you were online. Social features are nice, but let’s not force them on everyone. Let us opt in/out please. :)

  • I have questions so if you can make sure they’re answered before the PS4 release, that would be super cool.

    1. Will we be able to stream live gameplay and possibly do commentary over it? You have announced partnerships with Twitch and Ustream so can we only do this with the last 15 minutes of gameplay or do live gameplay with commentary?

    2. Is there video chat at all on the system?

    3. Is the web browser on the system able to recognize Flash, Java etc. to be a complete experience when browsing from your console? I want it to be compatible with everything like my iPad and PC.

    4. Can we sort our friends lists into groups? Maybe I could have a group of people that I only play CoD with and a group consists of people I know in real life while another could be people I talk to on forums, etc.

  • 5. Can we use the Remote Play feature with Vita and use the PS4 while it’s connected to Vita? Say, for instance, I’m playing KZ Shadowfall, girl comes around and wants to watch Netflix. Could I continue playing Shadowfall on my Vita while she watches Netflix through the PS4?

    6. Shuhei Yoshida, will you add me on your friends list? :) lol

    If you could make sure those first 5 are clarified, that would be appreciative and I think those are questions on, literally, all Sony fans’ minds.

  • @8 Izo Gray: I like your idea #4. :)

  • @1 Kotaku reported that there were no more updates coming to Home for Japan a few days back. Not sure what that means for future of Home entirely though…

  • I really love that ‘Epic Shuhei Yoshida’ picture with his silhouetted back to the camera and nothing but the PlayStation logo. Magical!

    Do you have any higher res versions?

  • @12
    Take a screenshot while watching the video. It will be the resolution of your monitor and card settings.

  • I have a couple of questions.

    Will our current PSN IDs continue over onto PS4?

    If we can migrate our account will we be able to change our ID names like people can on XBL?

  • Can you upload to YouTube as well?

  • I’m really looking forward to discovering all that the PlayStation Dynamic Menu has to offer. Like how it also mixes in the XMB as well.

  • So is every article going to continue to feature talk about indies and how they are so important to Sony? Or eventually will there will be discussion about games that show off the power of the PS4? I get it that Sony is in love with outdated graphics that look no better then those on a Commodore 64, but the PS4 is a powerhouse machine capable of doing so much more than pixelated 1-bit style games. It would be nice to at least acknowledge that power and show people what $400 is going to get them.

  • @8 I believe they showed a girl live streaming with the camera on her for commentary. It was shown at the PlayStation Meeting. You should be able to still watch it on YouTube if you missed it.

  • @#17
    I understand social features aren’t for everyone, but if graphics is all you care about you might as well just save your money and stay on PS3. Upgrading consoles just for graphic quality is kind of lame.

    I think this UI btw looks 40x better than PS3.

  • @Fred Dutton can we see some new screen shots of the new PlayStation Dynamic Menu UI. I’d also a extensive Video showing off the PlayStation Dynamic Menu UI as well. The more the better :-) I also would like to ask if we can see a impressive Official Unboxing of the PlayStation 4 in all it’s glory. I want PlayStation kick the other completion to the curb with a kick Butt unboxing better then what that other company did across the street ;-)

  • will the friends list increase only be for people with a ps4 or will it be open to all ps members on november 15th? I’ll be getting a ps4, but i’m hoping my friends who stick with ps3 will still have this feature.

  • I see that they are using their own photos and that’s what we see on the other videos, people using photos. Will we be able to do that?

  • Sounds like Gran Turismo :)

  • I am so excited about PS4 but one thing nobody talks about may be its just me but I hate to try to type send or reply to a message in the middle of the game especially multiplayer since you can not pause it why cant I just use text to speech like I can on my phone it is just a software you should be able to download it will make my life much more easier. :)

  • 2,000 friends oooh! my goodness! thank you SCE PSN SONY playstaion. pshome is still in beta it go hand in hand with all the networking going on ps4. It would be horrific not to have pshome on ps4. plus pshome was just put on server by it self hint!!!!!

  • Seems amazing powerful hehe.
    I really like the feeling of “easy to use” of consoles and this is incredible!

  • I want to add every one who leave a comment here

  • He recommends Dragon’s Crown, he has good taste!

  • With the ability to use our own photos, i wonder if the will continue with avatars? I can’t imagine people buying the official avatars when they could easily find a better free photo of a character they like online.

  • 1. Can we use external storage devices?

    2. Can we download the PS4 firmware day one for those of us who would like to install something larger than 500gb?

  • I seem to remember the crowd shots more than anything else because the director decided we’d rather see the crowd than the footage on screen.

    But I do remember you guys showing a video here on the blog that showed of the UI and it does look pretty good. Glad the XMB is still in the DNA of the new UI. :)

  • I am going to be very happy to get my PS4 on the 15th of November.

    This is my first day one console purchase in my 27 years of gaming, and I have zero regrets or worries about doing so, since the launch of the PS4 looks to be the most solid of any console launch prior to it.

    So excited for the next generation to begin! :)

  • Im excited for the new UI, i think it would be cool to have a dev/game page with forums, the devs for example Guerilla Games puts up a post on the Guerilla Games page, asking about feedback for a patch in Killzone SF if there is one. it would be a nice way to interact with the fans of a game or the devs of a game to discuss things about a certain game.

  • Games continue being installed after download?, or just download?

  • I really like what I saw of the PS4 UI, and I hope that somehow Sony can replace the current PS VIta UI with something similar.

  • @34 , obviously you can’t use software until it is installed so games will install after you download them from psn .
    When are we going to hear more about remote play , is it improved over the ps3 ? BY that I mean are there any changes to how it works such as can I use remote play from the vita to remotely turn on the ps4 and activate remote play or do I still need to be in the same room and activate it from the ui ( which makes it kind of useless on the ps3 , if I have to turn on the ps3 and activate it I may as well play on the ps3 )

  • Thanks for the post, can not wait to get my PS4 on midnight release.

  • Yoshida is the man!

  • Oh yes PS4…nothing but graphics and useless social features….lol PS3.5…I prefer the PS3…which was a real and necessary upgrade from PS2.

    Although I’m curious with one thing about PS4….will the players on PS4 be able to see their friends who are online on PS3 and VIta?…games they’re playing and everything…..or it will be like the failure of PS3 and Vita…that when a friend is online on Vita you can message them but they’re appearing offline?

  • So, I’ve held this question in my mind for a LONG TIME.

    While playing a game like CoD: Ghosts via remote play, online, against other PS4 players, can you use the Vita’s mic to speak with others in-game, since you’re playing from your Vita?

    Thanks! <3

  • PS4 HDD UPGRADE INSTRUCTIONS: Please make sure that comprehensive instructions are posted on the PS Support website.



  • I really hope the XMB won’t be linear when it comes to digital games like shown in the video. i think it will be cool if the system will have game/video folders that are layout by 5 X 5 or more

  • I would really like to know if the ps4 eye will work with the ps3. It would be awesome if it did. There are a lot of ps3 move games I would like to try but will not buy a ps3 eye just for them. However if the 4 eye would work on ps3 I would preorder it now.

  • @dodgedoors

    I like your Terraria icon <3

  • I pre-ordered the ps4 as soon as it was available.

    But since then almost all we’re getting is social media crud and indie game promotion.

    Will there be many real/aaa/full etc… games for the PS4 or is it going the route of the Vita? Very rare real games, tons of cheap crud and pay to win/play stuff.

    Please tell us straight up how much we can stay private on ps4, I have zero interest in letting people see what i’m doing, knowing my real name etc… I don’t even use twitter or facebook or any of that social media stuff so a Social Media promotion for the ps4 is making it seem as lame as the Xbox1 and their TV style focus.

    Unless we see some hard evidence of being able to stay private/anonymous, more real games, release dates for games, info on PS Plus carrying over, info on psn accounts carrying over, info on upgrading ps3 to ps4 games etc…

    Well at this point I’m now very very close to cancelling my pre order.

  • Not sure I really care about all the social functions unless its gonna have some kinda multi-messenger (akin to Xfire or Raptr that connects to all major networks, just for general chat) Doubt i’ll ever use the watching friends, or playing with friends stuff since i don’t have alot of friends on PSN. Also hope that there’s not a major reliance on online gaming with the new ps4 since the local ISP here sucks and there are no alternatives. n.n;;

  • PS4 already pre-order, day 1 shipping Amazon!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • @IzoGray I like your 4th idea

    @FJ1100_rider (#36) right now you can turn on your ps3 using your vita (same room or not) if you have the Remote Start setting on your PS3 turned on. Keep in mind your ps3 has to be in standby mode for it to work.

  • 1. Mark Cerny confirmed already that PS4 will upload to YouTube
    2. @14 of course your PSN carries over, it was announced and obvious too seeing Vita, PS3 and PSP used the same account, now being able to change your username is a good question, I’m assuming not tho, but we will be able to change the name we go by atleast. I hope we can in general tho
    3. @45 they said the First Party teams have 20 exclusives being released within the first year, I’m sure they are not announcing em yet cause it isn’t necessary. It would be nice to hear what’s coming after March tho lol
    4. @41 They said that PS3 headsets work on PS4 so I’d assuming all or atleast all the big name headsets
    5. @36 You have miss understood the technology used on the next-gen consoles, Both PS4 and Xbox One will install while downloading, meaning you can start playing a game while it is downloading
    6. @30 I’m pretty sure the Firmware will be up day one, but honestly I feel they may have a mandatory day one update
    @21, that’s what I wanna know, will 2000 be affective on PS devices like PS3 and PSV. I really hope so, cause that would defeat the purpose

  • I had to laugh.. yoshida was getting kills without even looking, came in the game busting caps, he looks like he plays very well in killzone SF. The Ui looks real user friendly.. I cant wait to try it out..
    Everyone is very excited for ps4.

    vp-psn legonairee group

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