PS5 system update 22.01-05.00.00 is now live with party chat changes – VRR is “on the horizon”

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Sony has released the latest system software update for the PlayStation 5, with version 22.01-05.00.00 available to download now. The update makes changes to bring back open and closed party chats, enhance the UI for Game Base and Trophy cards, game pinning, as well as add more accessibility features. Additionally, Sony has confirmed that Variable Refresh Rate (VRR) support will be added in the coming months.

All of this was known from the PS5 system beta that ran over the past six weeks. Having made changes to how party chats worked at the start of the PS5 generation, they’ve now rolled the functionality back to be closer to how it was through the PS4 era. You can now create both open and closed parties again, with parties used to describe voice chats, while messages now have a separate tab within the Game Base. A PS4 update is also out today to feature the same functionality.


PS5 2022 Beta Party Chat

Meanwhile, if you found the PS5 home screen a bit too restrictive, the great news is that you’ll now have 14 icons stretching across the screen, and you can pin up to five games to stick around on the screen so you can get to your most-played games more reliably. We also have new accessibility options with Screen Reader and mono audio output, and voice commands are returning from last generation, so you can tell the PlayStation to launch a certain game or app. Handy now that everyone has a microphone built into the DualSense, though this is limited to US and UK to start.

Lastly, Sony has stated that VRR will be coming to the PS5 “in the coming months”, finally catching up to a feature that the Xbox Series X|S has had for the past two years. This allows for the PS5 and compatible HDMI 2.1 TVs and PC monitors to sync their refresh rate to the game’s output. This helps to eliminate things like screen tearing and frame pacing issues, as well as reducing input lag. PS5 games will need to be optimised to support VRR, which can be added through a patch, though there is also an option to enable it for unsupported games and try to do this on a system level.

For today, though, here’s a breakdown of what this update provides:

New Party Chat Options 

In response to community feedback, we’ve made some updates to the Parties system:

  • Open and Closed Parties (PS5 and PS4)
    • When you start a party, you can now select either an open party or a closed party:
      • An open party lets your friends see and join the party without an invite. Friends of party members can also join.
      • A closed party is only for players you invite.
    • Note: in Game Base on PS5 and Party on PS4, if you select [Open Party] when starting a party, only players using the beta version of the PS5 or PS4 system software will be able to join. To start a party that players who aren’t using the beta version can also join, select [Closed Party].
    • Voice chat reporting feature update (PS5)
      • If you want to report something that someone in a party said, there are now visual indicators for you to identify who was speaking. This will help PlayStation Safety take appropriate action based on your report. You can learn more about this feature here.
    • Share Play update (PS5)
      • Start Share Play directly from the voice chat card. You no longer need to start Share Screen first to use Share Play.
  • Voice chat volume (PS4)
    • You can now individually adjust the voice chat volume of each player in a party on PS4, just like on PS5.

PS5 Game Base Enhancements

  • Voice chats are now called parties. For easier access, we’ve divided the Game Base menu into three tabs: Friends, Parties and Messages.
  • From the Game Base control menu and cards, you can now:
    • View all your friends under the [Friends] tab in the control menu, or access the player search feature and friend requests through links on this tab.
    • Add a player to a group or create a new group directly from Game Base in the Control Center. You can also send text messages, quick messages, images, video clips, and view a group’s shared media from this card.
  • When someone in a party is sharing their screen, you’ll now see the (on air) icon.
  • We’ve made it easier to decline friend requests by adding a [Decline] button to your friend request list.

New PS5 UI Features

  • Filter by genre
    • We’ve added an option to filter your game collection by genre, letting you quickly find specific types of game experiences.
  • Keep in Home
    • You can now keep the games or apps you choose on your home screen by selecting “Keep in Home” with the (options) button.
    • You can keep a maximum of five games and apps on each home screen with this feature.
  • Increased apps on the home screen
    • You can now have a total of 14 games and apps appear on your home screen.
  • Trophies UI update
    • We’ve updated the visual design of trophy cards and the trophy list. You can also see suggestions for which trophies to earn on the trophy tracker and access it from the Control Center whenever you’re playing a game.
  • Start Share Screen from the Create menu
    • From the Create menu, you can now start a Share Screen and stream your gameplay to an open party.

New Accessibility Features

  • More Screen Reader languages
    • Screen Reader, which reads aloud on-screen text and provides spoken guidance for operating the console, is now supported in six additional languages: Russian, Arabic, Dutch, Brazilian Portuguese, Polish, and Korean.
    • This expands Screen Reader support to 15 languages, including the current ones (United States English, United Kingdom English, Japanese, Italian, German, Spanish, Latin American Spanish, French and Canadian French).
  • Mono audio for headphones
    • You can now enable mono audio for headphones so the same audio is played from both the left and right headphones, instead of a stereo or 3D audio sound mix. This feature provides an added option to enhance the PS5 audio experience, particularly for players with unilateral hearing loss.
  • Check marks for enabled settings
    • You can now show a check mark on enabled settings so you can easily see that they’re turned on.

Voice Command: U.S. and U.K. limited release

  • We’re also testing a feature that enables voice commands for finding and opening games, apps, and settings, as well as controlling media playback on the PS5 console.
  • This feature is currently available in English for beta participants with accounts registered to the U.S. and U.K. 
  • To get started, enable Voice Command (Preview) from the Settings menu. Then, call out “Hey, PlayStation!” and ask your PS5 console to find a game, open an app or setting, or control playback while enjoying a movie, TV show or song.
  • You can help us improve the feature through our feedback program, which will sometimes record your voice commands (in accordance with our Privacy Policy) and let you provide instant feedback from time to time. You can turn this feature off at any time within system settings (see above). This feature never records audio for child accounts.
  • We’re in an early testing phase for this feature and will be closely assessing it and listening to your feedback throughout the beta. For more details, check out this page.

Source: PS Blog

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  1. A bigger update than usual. 1.057GB this time. I’m sure it was less than 1GB last time.

    The new “game base” thing is horrible. Apart from the weird vertical layout, what was wrong with the previous new system? You start a party, invite people, and then when you want to play a game with them, you start a voice chat from that party. Now we’ve got something that might be called groups that seem to show up in the messages tab, and you start a party from there?

    I think it’s one of those cases where they change something, everyone says “this sucks” and then by the time they get around to changing it based on that feedback and testing it, everyone’s probably got used to it by now.

    And why do we have to say “Hey, PlayStation!” when you could just say “playstation” with the PS4? Do we have to clearly pronounce the comma and exclamation mark as well?

    There’s some good things there though, with the “keep in home” option. And filtering your library by genre, which unfortunately doesn’t have a VR option.

    And they added Ukrainian language support. Which is probably of use to more people than any upcoming VRR support.

    • Yeah. You can great a party from a text chat group, which is essentially what happened before, but you can also just create a more throwaway voice chat for when you don’t want to found a permanent group. That’s better for when you have LFG groups being set up on the fly, and just adds a bit of flexibility. It’s half way between the old way and the new.

  2. Still no folders and therefore still no decent way to organise your content on the PS5, how hard can it be..?

    But then, console usability lags so much behind in general, it’s ridiculous sometimes. Tonight I wanted to watch a movie with the family, but the PS4 decided that first, an update was needed, instantly, otherwise no streaming would work. Imagine walking up to the presentation desk with a large audience eagerly awaiting your speech, but your PC decides otherwise, and forces an instant update that takes about 10 minutes.
    Of course, it was no big deal in my case, but why I have my PS4 on standby all the time is beyond me, if it doesn’t update automatically anything anyway.

  3. Nothing to get too excited about, still no folders but the additional space and pin option for the UI should help – and search by genre should mean we can actually find our PSVR games easily now too. That’s all that interests me in this update, ‘Party’ is just the means of accessing the internet browser. I don’t look at trophies very often but when i do i’m only interested in the most recently earned, would be nice to set that as the default sorting option.

    • PSVR isn’t one of the many genres you can filter your library by. Or one of the platforms, which includes PS3 along with PS4/5, for some reason.

      • Yep, i discovered that after installing it. Plus now i see that there is more navigation/clicking required to get into the browser… sigh.

  4. I just found a horrible new “feature”!

    If you’ve got several downloads going, maybe because everything decides to update all at once, you can’t view all the downloads at once to see how big they are and how long they’ll take. It just shows the time they’ll all take, and you have to view each one individually to see the details and how big they are. Bit crap compared to how it used to be when you could see everything all at once. Something I often rely on when it’s PS+/Now time and you’ve got a whole bunch of things downloading at once and you might want to prioritise the smallest ones and play those while you wait for the rest.

    Also, a 350MB update to GT7 seems to be taking 10 minutes, which can’t be right, surely? I think the problem might be GT7 and not the PS5 there though.

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