Following news on the minimum hard disk space needed by PS4 games, it turns out that the space isn’t needed for actual data, but for caching of game files. The data is installed and deleted in the background, so you won’t have to sit through long installations or lose valuable hard drive space.
The news comes from President of Sony’s Worldwide Studios Shuhei Yoshida via twitter:
@DiamondDM13 it’s automatic, not install but caching data
— Shuhei Yoshida (@yosp) October 26, 2013
The HDD requirement on the game cases are still true, so the space will be used up by games, but it will be used for temporary files. It’s unclear if the caching space will be shared by games, or if each game requires its own separate allocation – this could make a big difference on the space you have left for other games.