Is there a workaround for Sony's dumb shit?

So my girlfriend can’t get internet at her home due to a weak signal from her ISP. She returned the modem earlier and went out and bought a PS4. She used to have a launch model PS3 that is busted and now she’s hoping to watch Blu-Ray movies with her kids tonight. Only, she finds out that she can’t because, apparently, you need to first hook up the system to the internet, which she doesn’t have, to activate the Blu-Ray functions that are already installed in the console.

After the whole PS3 leap year debacle from a decade back, I won’t even begin to hypothesize what Sony’s engineers where smoking when they decided this was an efficient means of anything, but I’m wondering… if I download a firmware update to a USB drive and give it to her, will it fix the issue or does she literally need to connect to the internet just to press a button to activate it?

Otherwise, it looks like she’s going to need to unhook it, bring it to my place, hook it up, pop a blu-ray in, press a button, turn it off, unhook it, drive back to her house, hook it up, pop a blu-ray back in and take it from there.


Looks like downloading an update and installing it through USB does work, but I’m not sure if you can just download a firmware update, or if it has to be a specific file to enable it to play blu-rays. I’ll look more into it.

I mean, it should also be possible to download an update with a game disc, but I don’t know if there’s one readily available to use in your case.

1 Like

Yeah download the latest firmware onto a flash drive and move it to the system. I’m surprised they don’t have a movie disc with that on there but I guess those would be out of Sony’s control perhaps.

Typically this is done with video games. So you can get the latest firmware without internet, which helps some consumers and also for Sony’s side, fight against jailbroken hardware.

IIRC they did this because they have to pay royalties for the codec to run bluray or some such. When they enabled it across the board not everyone was even using it so it was wasted. If you choose to use the bluray movie playing feature they’ll give it to you via update and pay that royalty but not if you don’t bother.

1 Like

If it needs internet just to do some weird authentication she can turn on the hotspot feature on her phone and let the PS4 hook up to that WiFi.

1 Like

OK… from what I gather it is not simply an update to the firmware, but an actual activation one needs to perform when they boot up their blu-ray disc for the first time. Looks like it is possible to use a cell phone as a hotspot if the carrier/provider allows that sort of thing.

[Didn’t see your post til I was done, sbf717]

I guess there WAS one version of the firmware where you could naturally exploit an Mpeg2 codec in a debug menu screen to force activate it, but I’m thinking her system is way beyond that.

1 Like

Yeah that’s got to be pretty annoying.

Don’t know if you already did it but just pick it up and do it at your place. Either that or attempt to hotspot it from a phone.

So weird this isn’t already installed considering Sony wants you to watch movies on it.

1 Like

Honestly, I think even the Xbox one did the same with needing to download a Blu-Ray app first.

Anything to save a few bucks.

Especially since the media hub idea for the systems never really took off.