Though there have been plenty of rumours in 2018 about the current gaming generation winding down, it’s only been Microsoft who have confirmed that they’re working on new hardware so far. Soft-announcing the Xbox Scarlett at E3, the company are making the unprecedented move of acknowledging the next-gen before they have something to properly show off.
Sony, on the other hand, have been content to ride out their continued success. They have mentioned before that the PS4 is in its final stages, but it’s taken until a recently-published interview with the Financial Times to actually admit that, yes, it's time for a new machine.
Speaking to the outlet, Sony’s new CEO Kenichiro Yoshida said, "at this point, what I can say is it's necessary to have a next-generation hardware.” Now, that isn’t exactly him saying the PS5 is coming next year, but it does indicate that players should get ready for both Sony and Microsoft to embrace this new generation sooner rather than later.
This comes hot off the heels of Sony signing yet another patent for backwards compatibility. It’s clear they’ve been working behind the scenes all year to figure out a way to offer some synergy between their consoles, with many naturally assuming that it will help cushion the blow of having to pony up for another console so soon.
This also supports a couple other rumours the Financial Times were able to get their hands on, with sources telling them that the PS5 “might not represent a major departure from the PS4, and that the fundamental architecture would be similar.” That sounds a lot like Sony attempting to make it as easy as possible for PS4 games to be played on their new machine.
Though it's only been five years since it released, Sony confirming a PS4 successor does make sense. The roadmap of exclusives the company announced years ago have almost all come out. Yeah, there’s still the likes of Death Stranding, The Last of Us Part 2 and Ghosts of Tsushima that don’t have release dates, but it would make sense for those to be the PS4’s final exclusives, or maybe even PS5 launch titles.