Sony's PS3 firmware update adds nifty new features

Sony’s next PlayStation 3 update, firmware 2.40, will deliver several features that owners have been wanting for a long time.

We’ll let the Sony dudes explain the new features in detail in the video following the jump. For the most part, the enhancements include:

  • the ability to access and move throughout most of the PlayStation’s interface, known as the XMB (or Xcross Media Bar), while in-game
  • to read or send messages while in-game
  • to change the music selection in-game, creating a custom soundtrack
  • and to keep track of your success with Trophies, which is a more elegant Achievement system than the Xbox 360’s.

“Today’s PlayStation 3 experience has evolved significantly from what we debuted at launch, and the 2.40 firmware update will drive the PS3 community experience forward at a time when the platform’s momentum is stronger than ever,” said Peter Dille, senior vice president of marketing and PlayStation Network, SCEA [via Ars Technica].

Wired was given a demo of the firmware update, due out July 2, and tried the new XMB functionality. “You can change system settings and send messages to your friends, without leaving the game you’re currently playing,” Wired noted, although players do not have access to every system function.

Wired said Trophies is the biggest new feature, and it’s a “more elegant and interesting” way of displaying accomplishments than the Xbox’s “plain-Jane lists.”

last100 is edited by Steve O'Hear. Aside from founding last100, Steve is co-founder and CEO of Beepl and a freelance journalist who has written for numerous publications, including TechCrunch, The Guardian, ZDNet, ReadWriteWeb and Macworld, and also wrote and directed the Silicon Valley documentary, In Search of the Valley. See his full profile and disclosure of his industry affiliations.

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