How to Get the Most out of the new PS4 Streaming App for iOS

Sony just surprised the world and released a PS4 Streaming App for iOS. It allows you to stream your Playstation 4 to an iOS device for easy remote gaming. While this is exciting, Sony regretfully didn’t include an instruction manual with their App. As a result not everyone is having a good experience with it. In this article we will share some tips and tricks that will help you to get the most out of streaming your PS4.

It’s not a secret that Sony is a fan of Game Streaming. They’ve supported PS4 Streaming for some time on PC, Vita, and Experia devices. Today iOS joins this impressive lineup. If you have a modern iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch that is capable of running iOS 12.1, then you’re almost ready to enjoy your PS4 on your mobile device.

You might be expecting PS4 streaming on iOS to be plug & play. For some of you this may be true, but for many of you additional tweaking will be necessary. We’re here to help! Take a look at our top tips and tricks for getting the most out of streaming your PS4 to your iOS device.

1. It’s all about your Network

Before writing this article, I took a look at some of the reviews that gamers are leaving in the App Store for the PS4 Streaming App. One thing became clear after reading some of their comments. Many gamers don’t have any idea how this is supposed to work! And that’s ok! We’re here to clear things up so that you can improve your experience.

It’s important to understand that Sony’s PS4 Streaming App has nothing to do with your internet connection. You can have 1000 Mbps from your ISP and still have a horrible streaming experience through this App. It’s all about your Router!

The stream from your PS4 goes through your router and then is sent directly from the router to your iOS device. It never leaves the router and makes it’s way across the internet. So the performance of your router is tied directly to the quality of your streaming experience with the PS4 Streaming App.

For the best experience you will want to connect your PS4 directly to your router with an Ethernet Cable. This ensures a quality connection from the PS4 into the router. From there you’ll want to finish the connection by joining your iOS device to a 5 Ghz Wifi connection. Most people will have two networks available that they can join (one 2.4 Ghz and one 5 Ghz). It’s extremely important to make sure that your iOS device is connected to your 5 Ghz option (think of it as your high-performance connection).

2. You can sort of use your Dual-Shock 4 Controller with your iOS Device

In their App Store description, Sony states that you cannot use your DualShock 4 Controller with your iPhone.

PS4 Streaming App official description

While it’s completely true that you can’t pair a DualShock 4 with your iOS device, it’s not completely true that you can’t use one at all. The DualShock 4 has an impressively long wireless range. It can easily connect to the PS4 from rooms away. This means that as long as you’re within wireless range of the console, you can still control it with your DualShock 4.

You can connect the DualShock 4 to your iPhone using a clip like this one from Amazon. Even though the controller is not technically connected to the phone, it will still act as though it is since you’re within wireless range of the console.

Here’s how you do it:

  • Create a second PSN Profile on your PS4.
  • Make sure that your DS4 Controller is paired to your normal PSN Profile.
  • Switch to your secondary PSN Profile and then connect the PS4 Streaming App to your secondary PSN Profile.
  • After you establish your streaming connection to the PS4, press the PS Button on your DS4 Controller. Your console with open your primary profile while continuing to stream to your iOS device.
  • Now you can use your DS4 Controller while streaming to your iOS device!

3. Some MFi Controllers support R3/L3 Buttons

Many reviewers in the App Store point out that while the PS4 Streaming App supports Apple MFi Controllers, it isn’t worth using one since MFi Controllers lack clickable R3 and L3 Buttons.

This is true for most MFi Controllers, but one does exist that supports R3 and L3. So if you’re looking for a controller that can pair directly with the phone and that matches the button count of a DualShock 4, then consider the Rotor Riot RR1800. It should meet your needs.

Apple officially expanded their MFi protocol with the launch of iOS 12.1. While the Rotor Riot RR1800 is the first MFi Controller to include R3 and L3 Buttons, it’s entirely possible that more options will come in the future.

4. You’ll need a PS4 Pro for 1080p Streaming

It’s unclear if this is a technical limitation, but Sony is requiring a PS4 Pro for 1080p streaming. The Standard PS4 and PS4 Slim can stream at up to 720p. So if you notice that your streaming quality looks a bit pixelated on your iOS device’s retina display, there’s a good reason.

An iPhone X has a native resolution of 2436×1125. 720p streaming is only 1280×720. You’ll notice that there is a big difference between these two numbers. Even with a PS4 Pro, 1080p streaming is limited to 1920×1080. That’s still a far cry from what a modern iPhone is capable of displaying.

It’s important to be aware of this limitation so that you don’t view it as a streaming problem. Even 720p streaming is playable and enjoyable with your iPhone. 1080p doubles that and is even better. However neither option will match the native resolution of your iPhone. So don’t expect the PS4 Streaming App to look as sharp as a native iOS game.

5. Distance Matters

We’ve already talked about about how important networking is to your streaming experience. When it comes to Wifi, distance matters. 5 Ghz Wifi is recommended for streaming because it is faster and is less affected by wireless interference. It should provide you with the most reliable wireless connection.

With that said, 5 Ghz Wifi isn’t known for having great range. As you get further from your router, your speed and performance will drop substantially. 5 Ghz is also affected by physical objects. You’ll notice a decrease in performance when your signal needs to pass through several walls or floors.

We hope that all of these tips and tricks will improve your experience with the PS4 Streaming App. It’s exciting that Sony is making the technology available on new devices. If you know a tip or trick that wasn’t covered in this article, feel free to share it in the comments.

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