Can You Use a PS5 Controller on PS4?

The DualSense controller is Sony’s latest gamepad, and it’s optimized for the tech giant’s latest gaming console, the PS5. It’s packed with several new features that make the gaming experience more immersive.
If you haven’t gotten your hands on the PS5 yet, can you use a PS5 controller on a PS4? Read on to find out whether the PS5 controller is compatible with the PS4, and how you can use it to play PS4 games.

Are PS5 Controllers Compatible With the PS4?

Despite what the backward compatibility of the PS5 with PS4 games may suggest, the DualSense PS5 controller isn’t compatible with the PS4 console.
Whether you try connecting it by pressing the PS button while the controller is wired to your PS4, or via Bluetooth, the PS4 system simply won’t recognize the device. This conclusion is based on the tests of many users.
However, your PS4 can function as a charging station for your PS5 controller in the case of a wired connection between them.
There’s some good news, though; there’s a way through which you can work around this lack of compatibility and use your PS5 controller to play PS4 games.
Through the use of Remote Play with your PS4, you can use your sleek, new controller to play. This can be done using a variety of devices compatible with PS5 controllers to act as a middle man, such as PCs, IPhones/IPads, Apple TVs, and Android phones.
This method is relatively complex, but it works. Also, taking into consideration that PS4 games aren’t designed to take advantage of the more advanced features of the PS5 controller anyway, you may find that it’s more justified to just use your PS4 controller.

How to Use a PS5 Controller to Play PS4 Games

Using Remote Play is the sole method available that allows you to use your PS5 controller to play PS4 Games (if you don’t have access to a PS5 console).
Here’s a step-by-step guide outlining how it’s done using a PC (these instructions also apply if you’re using one of the other specified devices).
  • Download the PS4 Remote Play app on your PC.
  • Using the PS Remote Play application, follow the on-screen directions on your PC to connect your PS4.
  • Next, pair your PS5 controller to your PC via a USB wired connection and link it to PS Remote Play.
  • Keep the Remote Play app running in the background. Now the PS5 controller is connected to your PS4 through your PC.

Things to Consider When Using This Method

It should be noted that this method is not without its issues. There are a couple of things you need to keep in mind when using it.
The first thing to keep in mind is your internet connection. This method requires a reliable, high-speed internet connection to work smoothly.
If your internet connection isn’t up to par, you’re likely to experience a lag in input between your PC and PS4 console. This is sure to put a damper on your gaming experience.
Another caveat of using Remote Play to control PS4 games with your PS5 controller is that it won’t allow you to experience the new technology of the PS5 controller anyway.
The DualSense PS5 controller is packed with advanced capabilities such as haptic feedback, adaptive triggers, and a built-in microphone array.
None of these exciting new features are supported by PS4 games, meaning that you won’t get that next-gen experience you’re looking for. This begs the question as to whether this method is worth using.
On the other hand, there are perks to using your PS5 controller even if you won’t get the full experience. The PS5 controller is beautifully designed and will give you a premium feel that simply isn’t given by the PS4 controller. It also has a longer battery life, so charging will be less of an issue.

​​Why Can’t a PS5 controller Be Used Directly With a PS4?

Why isn’t there a way to directly use a PS5 controller with a PS4 console without having to use Remote Play?
The answer to that question is unclear. If you visit Sony’s official FAQ page with regards to the PS5, you’ll find that Sony itself has posed the question “Can I use the DualSense controller with my PS4 console?”
Their answer to that query is simply “The DualSense controller is not compatible with the PS4 console.” They don’t offer any justification as to why that’s the case.

Should You Use a PS5 Controller With a PS4?

The only reason you should be using a PS5 controller with a PS4 is if you don’t have any other alternative.
If your PS4 controller isn’t functioning and you don’t have access to another controller that’s compatible with the PS4, then go ahead and use a PS5 controller with it.
However, you should note that if it’s the next-gen experience provided by PS5 controllers that you’re seeking, you’ll be disappointed.
As mentioned above, PS4 games are simply not equipped to take advantage of the next-gen features—Haptic Feedback and Adaptive Triggers—of the Dualsense controller.
Also, the PS5 controller is reportedly susceptible to ‘drifting’ after about 420 hours of use. So it’s best if you use that time playing PS5 games to fully get that premium experience of the latest technology.

Conclusion

Unfortunately, Sony has not made the PS5 controller compatible with the PS4 console. You cannot directly connect the controller to a PS4 via a wired or Bluetooth connection.
However, there’s a way for you to use your PS5 controller to play PS4 games. By using remote play from a device that’s compatible with the PS5 DualSense controller, you can work around the lack of compatibility between the PS4 console and the PS5 controller.
It should be noted that this method doesn’t change the fact that PS4 games aren’t designed to take advantage of the DualSense controller’s next-gen features, such as Haptic Feedback and Adaptive Triggers.