Wondering why PS5 can’t download games? It’s simple!
When PlayStation 5 is not able to download games, users should free up storage on the optical drive and power cycle to the console to attempt again.
In case that fails, the internet connection should be inspected and possibly solved to be able to download games!
Let’s next learn why the downloading problem appears and what the solution includes!
Overall, your PS5 tends to give this kind of error whenever there either isn’t enough storage or the console has trouble connecting with the internet.
Outside of these occasions, your PS5 would rarely refuse to download a game and install it on its hard drive.
If your PS5 cannot download games, here’s why could this be happening:
- The storage of your PS5 console is FULL
- Interference with External Storage
- Problems with the Installation Directory
- WiFi/internet Connectivity Issues!
If your PlayStation 5 is experiencing one or more of the aforementioned possibilities, it will refuse to download games.
For users who have an external drive installed on their PS5, there could be an issue with the installation directory of the game so we’ll later pay attention.
To fix whenever your PS5 cannot download games, follow the solutions coming up!
To solve the problem of downloading games on a PlayStation 5 we’re going to undertake a chronological list of solutions.
That will help us not only solve the problem but also discover the cause of the problem and prevent the issue from appearing in the future!
Let’s jump right into the solutions!
Rebooting your system is always a recommended solution whenever your PS5 is having issues downloading or uploading anything.
A simple startup bug with the software, could prevent your console from writing data on its hard drive and essentially, prevent you from downloading.
Here’s how to perform a hard reset on your PS5 console in easy steps:
- Turn OFF the PS5 using the Power Button.
- Wait for the console to completely shut OFF.
- Unplug the console’s Power Adapter.
- Wait for 5 Minutes while the console is discharging!
- Reconnect the PS5’s Power Adapter back into the source.
- Start the device up!
When the device boots up, test whether you can download games now.
In case the “Download” button is gray or the process fails halfway through, proceed with the next step in our guide.
Note: Keeping the device unplugged for longer, provides better power circulation!
Your PS5 will be unable to download any games or content while it is not connected to the internet.
Stable and reliable internet connectivity is essential to downloading any games and saving them on your PS5’s hard drive. This is what we’re about to discuss down below!
To be able to download PlayStation 5 games, the console needs to be connected to WiFi.
Here’s how to connect your PS5 to the internet in easy steps:
- Open the SETTINGS on your PS5.
- Go to NETWORK.
- Select “SET UP INTERNET CONNECTION”.
- Choose “WIRELESS”.
- Select your Home WiFi Network from the list.
- Insert the WiFi Key and press “CONNECT”.
- Acquire an Ethernet cable.
- Connect the first end of the cable to your PS5’s Ethernet Port.
- Plug the second end of the cable into one of your router’s Ethernet Ports.
- In your PS5 settings, go to “SET UP INTERNET CONNECTION”.
- Choose “WIRED”.
- Follow the rest of the instructions to complete the setup.
Alert: Make sure to type the correct password for your home WiFi when you connect to the PS5.
One of the reasons that your PS5 is unable to download games is insufficient storage space.
If you’ve downloaded too many games, content, or videos on the storage of your PS5, there will be no space left for new games that you want to save on the hard drive.
The PS5 comes with 825 GB of Storage Space, but by default, you could only use ~670GB of storage.
To free up storage space on your PS5, follow these instructions:
- On your PS5, go to SETTINGS.
- Access the STORAGE tab.
- Highlight which games you wish to uninstall.
- Once you’ve selected the games that will be removed, go to “UNINSTALL”.
- Wait for the games you’ve selected to be removed from the console.
Before you test downloading any new games, make sure that your PS5 has at least 100GBs of free storage.
This is the standard space required for newer PS5 games, including their future updates and new firmware. When you’re done, test downloading a game now!
Note: You could leave less than a 100GBs of storage available, but check what the size of the game that you want to download is.
As you probably know, PlayStations cannot download multiple games at once. The content that is downloading has to be paused until the other one finishes or the process has to be canceled.
In that regard, you will have to make sure that your PS5 isn’t downloading or currently updating any other content, except for the game you want to download and save on the hard drive.
Go to the download settings of your PS5 and pause ALL other updates/downloads!
At the side of each item that is downloading, there will be a functions button, that will allow you to pause the download or have it completely canceled.
You don’t need to straightforward cancel your downloads, simply PAUSE them until the end of this guide!
Feel free to test whether you’re able to download the desired game now!
Note: Pausing an item that is downloading on your PlayStation 5 will keep it in the queue!
If you’ve connected an External Hard Drive to your PS5, the console may be getting confused as to where to download your game.
Especially if the connected external drive is running low on storage, this could cause this problem with your PlayStation 5 storage management.
Your PS5 console could only download games on an appointed hard drive!
Make sure that the game you want to save on your PS5 is being downloaded to the internal storage of the console.
For that to happen, make sure that no external or internal additional hard drive storage is plugged into the device.
Once you’ve got rid of the extra storage, check if the download will conduct now!
Note: Keep the external or internal hard drives disconnected, until the problem is resolved.
If nothing worked in your favor to resolve the problem, then a factory reset on your console is strongly suggested.
This will wipe the software clean, delete any corrupted cache files, data or applications and give your PS5 a fresh start.
A factory reset is generally done whenever the PS5 runs into an irreversible firmware problem or the software gets bricked.
It is also proven to help in download issue situations!
Follow these instructions to perform a factory reset on your PS5 console:
- Get your PS5 Wireless Controller.
- From the Home Screen, navigate to Settings.
- Next, go to System through the settings tab.
- Go to System Software.
- Highlight the “Reset Options” button.
- In the reset options tab, select your Reset Preference.
Tip: You should perform an “Erase Everything” type of reset, just to be certain that it will resolve the issue with your PS5.
If you still experience the problem with downloading on your PS5, then this could only mean two things:
- The hard drive of the PS5 has gone faulty
- PSN is currently offline
If PSN is currently offline for your region, your console will be unable to connect with the network and download any content.
To check if PSN is offline, visit the following link:
Once you’re there, select your region from the options slider and check what’s the status. If it is offline for your region, then you should probably wait for a few hours for it to come back online.
If the issue persists even when PSN is online, then you should deliver your PS5 for a checkup and potentially a repair.
Tip: Check whether the PlayStation 5 warranty is intact.
Read Next: How To Unblock Someone On PS5?
Hence, the PlayStation 5 can’t download games simply because the console is running out of storage or there is another ongoing update/download that you should wait out. In case nothing helps, resetting the PlayStation 5 to factory settings always helps!
Now that we’ve learned why PS5 can’t download games we’re ready to solve the problem permanently and get the games we want.
Meanwhile, remember that when the problem is persistent you can always find more help by contacting PlayStation Support.
Finn Wheatley holds a Master’s Degree in Computer Science from UCL, London. He helped small data science consultancy firms, helping large corporations to grow their data capabilities, deploy advanced machine learning-based analytics and troubleshoot tech-related issues. Check out more about him here.