Microsoft’s reveal of the Xbox One X at E3 2017 has driven rumors that Sony could introduce a PlayStation 5 as early as 2018. Gamers may want to hold on to their current PS4 or PS4 Pro, however, as Sony President Shawn Layden points to the PS5 coming later rather than sooner.
Speculation of a 2018 release for the PS5 has primarily been driven by Macquarie Capital Securities analyst Damian Thong. He’s shared the prediction multiple times over the past year, according to reports from Barron’s and Game Zone among others.
The analyst also predicted the PS4 will have more than 10 teraflops of power. This would be monstrous jump from the current 4.2 teraflops in the PS4 Pro and 6 teraflops in the Xbox One X releasing this November 7.
By comparison, the $700 Nvidia GTX 1080 Ti video card for PCs is 11.3 teraflops while the recently announced $1,200 AMD Radeon Vega will sport 13 teraflops of power when it is released in early July. However, the Vega is not meant for gaming at the moment, as Yahoo Tech points out. However, it does set the stage for AMD’s future GPUs that will likely appear in consoles.
Sony just introduced the PlayStation 4 Pro this past November. Could it really be ready to pump out a new generation of hardware in two years? Layden’s interview with German website Golem.de (via VG247) suggests otherwise as he stated “It will probably be some time” before a PS5 arrives.
The reason behind the delay could be a simple business decision by Sony due to the recent release of the PS4 Pro. Director of digital media strategies at Strategy Analytics gave just that reason in an interview with We Write Things prior to E3.
“My original thought was that you’re going on four year cycles, not two year cycles. I’m skeptical that they will launch a new console in 2018 after a two year time frame. I don’t think it is going to move to a two year cycle. [Sony] still has to pay back R&D. I mean there is a lot of expense that went into building the Pro. Are you going to undercut that market before it has made money?”
It may also take until 2019 or later for hardware prices to drop enough to make an affordable consumer console that is a significant leap over the current PS4 Pro and Xbox One X. The $500 price of the latter and the wildly successful $400 launch of the standard PS4 demonstrates the sweet spot for new console launches.
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