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Sony: PS4 Development Already Underway

During an investors conference call on Wednesday, Sony executive vice president and chief financial officer Masaru Kato confirmed that the company is currently working on the PlayStation 4. The news arrives after Nintendo confirmed that its upcoming gaming console dubbed as "Project Cafe" will be revealed during E3 2011 next month.

When asked to explain increased research and development costs, Kato blamed the big spending spree on the PlayStation 3's successor. "For the home equipment the PS3 still has a product life," he said. "But this is a platform business, so for the future platform - when we'll be introducing what product I cannot discuss that - but our development work is already under way, so the costs are incurred there."

Sony Computer Entertainment boss Kaz Hirai sang a different tine back in March, saying that "a near-future PS4 or next-generation home console is not something that we are even debating now." In fact, the current console isn't even middle-aged, with a life expectancy of around ten years. Given that the console was originally birthed by Sony back in November 2006, Hirai is indicating that it won't officially bite the dust until 2016.

But as we've seen with the PlayStation 2 – which is still alive and kicking and receiving a fair dose of new games to this day – two Sony consoles can co-exist in harmony on the market. That said, the whole ten-year lifespan has no relevance to the company launching a new console in the next year. In fact, Nintendo has probably pushed development into high gear thanks to promises that Project Cafe's hardware will be superior to the current PlayStation 3 platform.

To make matters worse, developers have already received prototype development kits for Microsoft’s next-generation Xbox console. "Probably we should watch these companies, in my opinion," said the head of Sony's global games development team, Shuhei Yoshida. "Because PS3 was later than Xbox, and is more powerful, so it has a longer lifespan."

Earlier reports indicated that the PlayStation 4 will support 3D right out of the box, and optical media. "We do business in parts of the world where network infrastructure isn’t as robust as one would hope," Hirai said last year. "There’s always going to be requirement for a business of our size and scope to have a physical medium."

Back in December 2009, reports surfaced that Sony was shopping around for alternatives to the Cell architecture based on the level of frustrations submitted by current PlayStation 3 developers. There has also been talk of using Intel's Larrabee GPGPU alongside the Cell along with rumors of using a modified, upgraded version of the Cell processor that would grant SPUs direct access to the main memory, allowing developers to program for a single memory space.

But with the "future platform" now exposed to the public, Sony may be revealing the fourth-generation PlayStation console next month at E3 2011, stealing some of Nintendo's "new console" spotlight.

  • Murissokah
    "Already"? I'd be surprised if they hadn't. Last I checked PS3 graphics were based on a GeForce 7 series GPU. About time for an update.
    Reply
  • alidan
    lol nice dig at america and 3rd world.

    that said, its harder to make the internet fast in bigger areas. are there any other countries that are as big as america, spread out as america, and have faster internet? im asking the question seriously because i dont know.

    most asian countries that boast faster internet are barely bigger than california, and have large pop densities in small areas, making it simple to upgrade infrastructure.
    Reply
  • alidan
    greghomeGPU wise, Xbox and PS3 are the same, all PS3 has over the microsoft box is Blu-Ray supportand user upgradeable hdd,
    Reply
  • JOSHSKORN
    Unless the next-gen consoles "pwn" current generation (at the time of their release) PCs, I'm not interested. Gamers need to switch to PC gaming or OnLive so game developers can take advantage of newer PC hardware without being constricted to console hardware.
    Reply
  • badaxe2
    alidanand user upgradeable hdd,

    and free multiplayer,
    built in-internet browser
    HDMI 1.4
    CPU with nearly 3 times the bandwidth.

    They don't need a new console any time soon. The Playstation line has always given the consumer the best bang for their buck. The ten yr.+ lifespan speaks for itself.
    Reply
  • CsG_kieran_2
    The CELL can still keep up with a ok high spec PC. But a re-fresh is needed.
    Reply
  • alidan
    JOSHSKORNUnless the next-gen consoles "pwn" current generation (at the time of their release) PCs, I'm not interested. Gamers need to switch to PC gaming or OnLive so game developers can take advantage of newer PC hardware without being constricted to console hardware.
    i like stunted growth, it forces game devs to focus on pulling more out of the hardware with their engines instead of throwing more hardware at it to compensate.

    Reply
  • alidan
    badaxe2and free multiplayer,built in-internet browserHDMI 1.4CPU with nearly 3 times the bandwidth.They don't need a new console any time soon. The Playstation line has always given the consumer the best bang for their buck. The ten yr.+ lifespan speaks for itself.
    the browser sucks
    multiplayer should always be free unless mm, you shouldnt be praised for doing something right thats been done right for 30+ years
    what does hdmi 1.4 mean to average people?
    CPU with nearly 3 times the bandwidth, but the gpu is held back, so in reality the ps3 is more powerful cpu the 360 more powerful gpu, so they tend to balance.

    CsG_kieran_2The CELL can still keep up with a ok high spec PC. But a re-fresh is needed.
    clock per clock, the cell is way behind on what a average new cpu does. but when the software is specialised for the cell, it can barely par of current intel quad core with ht, and not the high end ones either.
    Reply
  • stingstang
    I think a refresh is needed. There are games which you can clearly see need a little -alterations- to play in 4 person multiplayer, and there are games like L. A. Noire which lag at times, as well as Armored Core 4 up close to smoke effects. I don't see why people are complaining AT ALL that there are better gaming consoles being developed. You don't want better-looking games with better AI, Physics, bigger worlds? Pshh.. Then go back to PS1 and play FFVII some more.
    Reply
  • neblix
    I dunno guys, I'm rooting for new consoles with better hardware.

    It's better for PC Gamers who don't want console ports of Crysis 2 with outdated or non-revolutionary graphics.
    Reply