There’ll be no new console from Sony for at least 12 months, as the PlayStation 4 edges closer to breaking the 100 million sales milestone.
Just before Christmas is always the most common time to launch a new console and now it’s looking increasingly like winter 2020 is exactly when the PlayStation 5 will be released.
Although they never referred to it as the PlayStation 5, Sony announced their next generation format earlier in the month and insisted that it will not be out this year.
And now, as part of their latest financial results, they’ve said that the new console will not be out for at least another 12 months, i.e. not before next May.
Nobody’s going to launch a new video game console in the middle of summer, so that only really leaves the latter half of 2020. Possibly it could be spring 2021, but if it’s that far off Sony almost certainly wouldn’t have announced anything yet.
In terms of their financial results, the company as a whole had its most profitable year ever, thanks to both the game division and an upturn for its movie business.
A total of 17.8 million PlayStation 4 consoles shipped over the last 12 months, down from 19 million the year before – and it’s that gradual decline that would’ve inspired plans for the PlayStation 5 in the first place.
The PlayStation 4’s lifetime total now stands at 96.8 million, meaning it will end up as one of the top five selling consoles of all-time. It’ll almost certainly beat the fourth-placed PlayStation 1 on 104.25 million but beating the DS and PlayStation 2 on over 150 million each will be more difficult.
Although it may be that hardware sales become largely irrelevant in the next generation, as Sony also hinted at its plans for game-streaming.
The full details won’t be revealed until a Corporate Strategy Day next month but in talking to investors they revealed that PlayStation Now currently has 700,000 subscribers and has seen 40% annual growth.
The implication was that PlayStation Now, which already streams a variety of PlayStation 2, 3, and 4 titles, will be at the centre of whatever their equivalent to Google Stadia and Microsoft’s Project xCloud is.
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