Updated 30 January 2019

How to activate a PlayStation system

Find out how to activate your Primary PS4, perform a temporary activation on a friend’s PS4 and activate a PS3 or PS Vita/TV.

Activation links your PlayStation system to your account and allows you to access PlayStation Store purchases. Depending on the content you want to access, there are different activation restrictions:

  • PlayStation console activation limits

    Games

    • 1 Primary PS4 and 1 temporary PS4 activation
    • 2 PS3 systems
    • 2 portable PlayStation systems (PSP or PS Vita/TV)

    Video

    • 1 PS4 Primary PS4 and 1 temporary PS4 activation
    • 1 PS3
    • 3 portable PlayStation systems (PSP or PS Vita/TV)

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How do I activate a PS4 system?

Each player can have one PS4 activated as the Primary PS4 for their account, and one Temporary Activation on another PS4.

Activate a Primary PS4

  • [Settings] > [Account Management] > [Activate as Your Primary PlayStation 4] > [Activate].

Activate a temporary PS4

A Temporary activation happens when you select [Play as a Guest] on another PS4 log-in screen and sign in to PSN. You will be the only user who can download and launch your PlayStation Store content. Always remember to sign out of your account to end a temporary activation and avoid reaching your activation limit.

  • Activate PS3

    There are no primary/temporary activations on PS3.

    1. Select your local user account and go to [PlayStation Network] > [Sign-in] > [Account Management].
    2. Go to  [System Activation] and highlight 'PS3'.
    3. Select the type of content you want to activate your PlayStation 3 system to use and press (X button).
    4. Highlight 'Activate System' and press (X button).
    5. You will see a message to confirm that your device is now activated or to let you know that you have already reached your activation limit for the content type.
  • Activate PS Vita/TV

    There are no primary/temporary activations on PS Vita/TV.

    1. On your PS Vita system tap  [Settings] > [PlayStation Network] > [System Activation].
    2. Select the type of content you want your PS Vita to use - Games or Video.
    3. Tap [Activate] > [OK].
    4. You will see a message to confirm that your device is now activated or to let you know that you have already reached your activation limit for the content type.

How do I activate a new PlayStation system?

Each account can have one Primary PS4 and one temporary activation. A temporary activation will end once you sign out of PSN. To change a Primary PS4, you must first manually deactivate the previous Primary PS4.

If you have reached your activation limit for PS3 or PS Vita/TV, you can manually deactivate each system using the guide below.

If you find that you cannot sign out of a temporary activation or manually deactivate a PlayStation system, you can perform a remote deactivation of all PlayStation devices. This action can only be performed once every six months and should be considered as a last step.