Sales of Sony's PlayStation 4 have been robust since its release last year, but one executive says the company is already planning for the PlayStation 5. Whether it is a physical home console or not, Sony says that the PlayStation 5 will be focused on games.
Some have speculated that the release of the PS4 and Xbox One could be the “last generation” of home consoles, as computing increasingly moves to the cloud, with processing done remotely and then streamed to home devices. Sony Computer Entertainment’s executive vice president Masayasu Ito said that gamers should expect a “next generation” of gaming consoles, including the PlayStation 5, but said he was not sure whether the next PlayStation would be a console or not.
“I think there will be a PS5. However, I don’t know what form it’ll have. It could be a physical console, or it could be in the cloud,” Ito told the Japanese newspaper Nikkei Keizai Shimbum.
Sony has made a major push to advance its cloud gaming services with the release of PlayStation Now and the $100 PlayStation TV console, but the company only makes a slim profit on the sale of its consoles. It sold over 16 million consoles as of the week ending Nov. 29, according to VGChartz. Microsoft Corp., Sony's gaming rival, has reportedly sold just over 8 million Xbox One consoles following sales during Black Friday.
Ito told Nikkei that while the PS5 might be a change of form, its next-generation games will advance the medium, which is the company's goal. Sony has reportedly shifted much of its focus from traditional media to its video game platform in the past few months. It will cut back its television and smartphone divisions to focus on PlayStation projects like the Morpheus virtual-reality headset.
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Due to an editing error, this article once stated that sales of the PlayStation 4 have been "underwhelming." Sales of the PS4 have, in fact, exceeded the expectations of most industry analysts since their late-2013 release. It has been changed to reflect the reporter's original phrasing.