How To Increase The Download Speed On Your PS5

If you're one of the people who had to wait a long time to get ahold of a PlayStation 5 console, chances are you have a list of games that you're excited to download, and it may be a long one. As with the previous console generation, PS5 users can either purchase a game on disc or download the digital copy — though if you have the Digital Edition version of the console, downloading is the only option you have.

Waiting for a game to download can be frustrating, especially when the title requires pulling down 40GB or more of data. If you've noticed your PS5 is downloading more slowly than it should — or you're simply hoping to optimize things in order to save every minute possible — there are some console settings you can tweak to try and speed up the downloading process, not to mention a simple internet connection adjustment that may change everything.

Upgrade your PS5 console's firmware

Sony recommends keeping your device's firmware up to date for the best gaming experience. Although some PS5 firmware updates affect minor details, some can significantly improve system performance. For example, previous updates have included adding custom settings, such as low latency mode. If you notice that your PS5 is downloading at a slower rate than usual, it may be in need of a firmware update.

There are two different ways you can update the console's software, the first of which involves going through the Downloads & Uploads section:

  1. Turn on the PlayStation 5 console.
  2. In the upper-right corner of your screen, select Settings with the PlayStation button.
  3. Wait for the menu to appear.
  4. Choose Downloads/Uploads or the arrow down icon.
  5. Under Downloads/Copies, select System Software.
  6. Choose Update System Software.

Alternatively, you can update your PS5 firmware through the System Settings tab:

  1. Turn on the PlayStation 5 console.
  2. In the upper-right corner of your screen, select Settings.
  3. Select System.
  4. In the left-side menu bar, select System Software.
  5. Choose System Software Update and Settings.
  6. Select Update System Software.
  7. Select Update Using Internet.

If neither of these options works for you for whatever reason, there's also the option of installing the latest firmware using a USB drive by manually downloading the PS5 update file. This method typically only needs to be used if the console's update becomes stuck and restarting the system doesn't solve the problem, according to Sony.

Used a wired connection instead of Wi-Fi

While most of us use wireless connections for browsing the internet, this method can significantly reduce your network speed due to several factors. For example, things like the material of your home's walls or the distance from the router can affect the actual network speed that your console can utilize. For this reason, one of the easiest and most straightforward ways to improve your PS5's download speed is by maximizing your existing internet connection using an ethernet cable. 

Sony explains how to connect a PS5 console to a wired internet connection:

  1. Navigate to Settings.
  2. Scroll down and select Network > Settings.
  3. Select Set Up Internet Connection > Set Up Wired LAN.
  4. Click the Connect button and then follow the on-screen prompts.

According to Spectrum, ethernet cables generally provide faster internet speeds, lower latency, and more reliable connections. With an ethernet cable, you can get direct access to your network and improve speed significantly. Aside from this, you may want to consider checking your modem's bandwidth and upgrading your internet service provider to get faster speeds. In some cases, download speeds can also be affected by the number of users at any given time, so you can also tell your housemates to take a break from the internet while your download is in progress.

Put your PS5 into rest mode

Although there are some valid reasons why you shouldn't be putting your PlayStation 5 in rest mode, it still has a few advantages. With this mode, you can pause games, charge controllers, download games, and so on. Most notably, you can focus your PlayStation's resources on making sure downloads happen faster. To put your PS5 into rest mode, follow these steps:

  1. On the console's DualSense controller, press the PlayStation button.
  2. In the far right corner of the TV or monitor screen, choose the power icon.
  3. Select Enter Rest Mode.

Once the console is in rest mode, make sure the PlayStation 5 stays plugged into its power source. If the console loses power while in this state, it'll go into storage repair mode the next time it is turned on to evaluate and fix any potential data corruption that resulted from the unexpected power loss. Depending on the drive size and number of games installed, this process could take quite some time.

Manage your PS5 downloads

When your PlayStation is in rest mode, it tends to install all of the pending updates on your console. However, this may mean that the game you want to download is given lower priority. Thankfully, you can disable automatic downloads on the PS5 so that the console downloads content in the order you prefer (via Sony).

  1. Turn on the PlayStation console.
  2. In the upper-right corner of your screen, press Settings.
  3. Select Saved Data and Game/App Settings.
  4. On the left-side menu bar, select Automatic Updates.
  5. Next to Auto-Download, toggle off the button.
  6. Next to Auto-Install in Rest Mode, toggle off the button.

This may speed up game downloads by ensuring the console only installs the content you want at any given time, but keep in mind that it also means the PS5 won't automatically download new game updates when they drop. If an update is released in the middle of the night, for example, having automatic downloads disabled may actually slow you down, as you'll have to manually download and install the update the next time you turn on the console.