Hands on: Facebook on PlayStation 3 review
19th Nov 2009 | 11:22
Sony's 3.10 firmware update brings Facebook to the PlayStation - kind of!
Sony announced only recently it was adding Facebook integration to the PS3 – a move which raised a few eyebrows, considering the length of time it's taken Microsoft to add Facebook to Xbox Live and the build-up the company has given the announcement.
With the two companies now going face to face with movie downloads, Facebook integration may seem like a minor thing but in the fast-paced online world where social-networking is king, users want to know what their friends are up to at all times.
So, has Sony been working behind the scenes day and night to create the ultimate Facebook app for the PS3? The answer is a definite no.
It's not 100 per cent clear when you have updated your PS3 with the 3.10 firmware where you actually go to set up Facebook on the PS3.
That's because Sony has hidden the icon in the Account Management section of the XMB.
Click here and the familiar Facebook logo will appear. Once this is done, you are asked if you want to share trophy information, share purchase information and share game event information.
As we didn't want everyone knowing how many tracks from SingStar we downloaded, the only bit of information we shared was Trophy Information.
Once this is done, it will ask you to add your Facebook account details: user name and password. Click OK and the update is completed.
Thankfully you only have to log these details in once, unless you want to change your settings that is.
Lack of support
Now, while we were expecting some sort of Facebook button to appear – like what happened with iPlayer – on the XMB there's nothing to get you on to the site quickly and efficiently.
Like before, you have to log into Facebook through the clumsy PS3 web browser, add your account details in again (unless you have done this before) and access the site that way. It's disappointing to say the least.
What Sony has done is improve the feel of the website within the browser but there is nothing here which will make you come back for more.
Instead of being Facebook on the PS3, it's your PS3 account on Facebook – a news feed of what you are up to, what trophies you have achieved and what you have been downloading from the store.
Quite why you would want everyone to know this is beyond us. While trophy checking against your mates is fine through the console all your non-gaming friends don't necessarily need to know that you have made 50 sniper kills in Modern Warfare 2. Or, er, that you have managed to gain a trophy for singing your heart out on SingStar.
In all, the Facebook update from Sony feels rushed. It feels like after the announcement that Microsoft had added Facebook integration in a decent and rather inspired way, Sony felt compelled to follow suit even though the link-up is a rather minor one.
Although Sony promises this is just the start of what it is doing with Facebook it's a false one. We would rather the company had held off and created something that actually meant you can access Facebook in an easy way.