PS5 has one of the PS4's best hidden features — what you need to know

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Sony’s PS5 is officially upon us, launching on November 12 in the U.S. and November 19 in the U.K. As such, there’s an official FAQ detailing everything you need to know about the next-gen games console. 

One notable feature is PS5 games won’t be region locked, meaning you can buy a game in the U.S. or Japan and play it on a PS5 from the U.K. or Europe. It’s a small thing on the surface but one that helps streamline the whole process of buying a physical copy of a game. 

While digital downloads are increasingly popular, they can be more expensive than buying a physical copy of a game in a real-world shop. With this in mind, getting a physical copy of a game can be more cost-effective than downloading it. And for people with slow internet connections, physical games might be the only way to get a game up and running without a lengthy wait. 

As such, having games that aren’t region locked will be a boon for people still keen on buying physical copies of PlayStation games. This has been the case with the PS4, so it’s good to see Sony carry this over to the PS5. 

And it's also set to be a benefit to people who like to import games from other countries that might not be available in their country of residence. In short, this is a neat little feature to democratize console gaming even further. 

We’d have liked to see Sony continue this approach to PlayStation gaming by bolstering the backwards compatibility of the PS5, which can only play PS4 games out of the box. But that doesn't seem to be the case, as Sony seems very focused on  next-gen experiences. Meanwhile, Microsoft’s Xbox Series X appears to have a one Xbox console to rule them all approach, whereby the Series X can play games from every generation of Xbox dating back to the original 2001 console. 

  • Use a PS4 VPN to stream extra content and avoid network throttling
Roland Moore-Colyer

Roland Moore-Colyer a Managing Editor at Tom’s Guide with a focus on news, features and opinion articles. He often writes about gaming, phones, laptops and other bits of hardware; he’s also got an interest in cars. When not at his desk Roland can be found wandering around London, often with a look of curiosity on his face.