How Long Does It Take to Transfer Data from PS4 to PS5?

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The PS5 has been out for a few months now, but with demand continuing to exceed supply for both of the next-gen consoles it seems only now is the new hardware is only now becoming commonplace in the hands of the masses. As soon as the high of a successful PS5 purchase wanes however, the work begins. There are multiple ways to get your games and your saves onto your new console, but they are certainly not created equal. Down below we’ll run you through your options and give you an informal answer to how long it takes to transfer data from PS4 to PS5.

How Long Does It Take to Transfer Data from PS4 to PS5?

PS5 - Transferring Data From Your PS4 Console

Transferring Via Wireless Connection (Slowest)

Transferring your PS4 Data to your PS5 over Wi-Fi tends to be the instinctual choice for most users. Sure, wireless transfer will be a little slower but looking for that LAN cable sitting in some forgotten drawer somewhere in your house would mean standing up. And we hate standing. The thing is, wireless is slower. 

heck of a lot slower. While exact times can vary between users depending on their version of console and amount of data, you can rest assured that wireless data transfer takes way, way too long. A knee-jerk average time would number something in the dozens of hours for a median-range amount of data, in which time numerous problems can occur — power outages, hardware malfunctions, accidental unplugs — that can have you at best restarting the transfer. Many users have left their consoles on for days only to see the estimated transfer times continue to rise.

So wireless transfer is a pretty serious no-go. 

Pulling Saves off the Cloud & Downloading the Game (Faster)

If you don’t mind re-downloading the game, you can just download the save data for the games you’re actually still playing and download them directly from the store. This can save you a headache in case some reddit-induced paranoia has you worried about bricking your console in some way (which isn’t something you really need to worry about). You can use this method to avoid transferring altogether and keep your data protected. 

Transferring Via Wired Connection (Fastest)

If you don’t have your saves in the cloud, and don’t want to spend the bandwidth downloading the game directly from the store, the wired data transfer is the best bet. It reduces transfer time from hours to minutes and takes the extra piece of hardware out of the middle. Again, exact times vary, but you can expect to be able to finish your data transfer by the time it takes you to make and eat lunch.  

Transferring Via External Storage (Optional)

It’s good practice to keep some games on an external harddrive anyways to free up space on your console, so there’s a decent chance you already have some of your data off the device. If so, you can just directly plug your game into the PS5 and play right off there — you don’t actually need to download the games onto the new console. Indeed some prefer this method, and is technically the fastest way to start playing. But not everyone has the right external drive for this, the space to transfer games, or the ability to dedicate it solely to their PS5 and will have to look at one of the options anyway. That said, it’s always good to keep a backup if possible.

How do you plan to transfer your data from PS4 to PS5? Any tips or hard-lessons learned when you tried it yourself? Let us know in the comments below!

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Will Heydecker is a writer, screenwriter and illustrator who still likes dragons. As part of his bitter war against adulthood, he likes to distill art, gaming, technology, and entertainment info into digestible topics people actually enjoy reading.