Sony has announced that a new PS3 firmware update is now available. The new update (v3.40) adds new features to the PS3, including the ability to purchase a PlayStation Plus subscription as well as improving the connection between gamers’ PlayStation Network and Facebook accounts.
The publisher will also be launching a system software update (v6.30) for the PSP. This update will add PlayStation Plus compatibility for gamers that own both a PS3 and PSP and will be launched simultaneously with the PS3 firmware update.
Although all PlayStation Network users will continue to enjoy free access to the PlayStation Network, those gamers who subscribe to the PlayStation Plus will enjoy access to exclusive gaming features, content and functionality. This premium subscription service will allow you access to games worth over £200 a year as well as exclusive discounts on the Store and early access to demos and beta trials.
You’ll also be able to download new avatars, dynamic themes and game add-ons as well as try full game trials for limited periods and enjoy automatic download options. Of course if you sign up for a one year membership before the 3rd of August you’ll also be able to download LittleBigPlanet for free.
Other features of the new firmware update include a new network based photo sharing feature that is available on the Photo Gallery. This will enable you to upload, browse and comment on photos on Facebook and Picasa as well as share photos between your PlayStation Network friends and print photos from the Photo Gallery.
There will also be a new function on the XMB bar called Video Editor and Uploader which will enable you to edit, save and upload video files stored on your PS3 to sites including Facebook and YouTube.
Another neat feature is the option to rate the PlayStation Store content you have purchased with a new five star rating system. The power save settings have also been tweaked, meaning the default setting for the PS3 system auto-off will be set at two hours.
Lastly a new PlayStation Network application is available on Facebook (here), building on the previous connection with Trophies and the ability to share purchases made from the Store. You’ll be able to integrate your PlayStation Network and Facebook accounts even further with this new application, for example you can display your PSN profile on Facebook, send a PSN friend request to your Facebook friends and add the PSN application tab to your Facebook profile.
Feel free to browse through El33tonline’s previous coverage for more information about PlayStation Plus.
Source: SCEA’s PlayStation Blog