While the PS4 still feels like it has some life left in it, it’s successor is undoubtedly on the horizon.
While we’ve previously known very little about Sony’s next-gen console – which we imagine will be called the PlayStation 5, or PS5 for short – an interview between Wired and lead system architect Mark Cerny has shed some light on many aspect of it.
So, here’s everything we currently know about the PS5. And these aren’t just rumours, they’re facts.
Development and launch
Sony’s next-gen console has been in development for the last four years. A number of studios have already been working with it, and recently dev kits have been sent to developers at an accelerated rate so that they can get familiar with it. PlayStation 5 definitely won’t be arriving in 2019 though. Expect it to launch late into 2020 and you probably won’t be disappointed.
A gentle launch is being envisioned – one in which games are released for both the PS4 and the PS5 for a certain amount of time. It has been hinted that Death Stranding might be one such title. In any case, your PS4 won’t suddenly become obsolete overnight.
As with the PS4, Sony is working closely with AMD for the PS5. Its processor will have eight cores and will be based on the third generation of AMD’s Ryzen line. Made using 7nm Zen 2 microarchitecture, it’s going to be much faster than the Jaguar at the heart of the PS4 and the PS4 Pro. Meanwhile, a custom GPU based on Radeon’s Navi family will provide detailed visuals up to 8K resolution. Don’t get your hopes up for many games running at that resolution natively though. The GPU will also support ray tracing, which is a high-end feature only currently feasible on Nvidia’s RTX range of graphics cards. And even then, performance is iffy.
Sony is acknowledging how much audio affects the gaming experience, too. A custom unit for 3D audio will work alongside the GPU to immerse you in the experience like never before. And the immersion will be broken less often thanks to the inclusion of an SSD that “has a raw bandwidth higher than any SSD available for PCs.” Basically, load times will be massively reduced, and streaming performance very much improved. Open world games won’t hitch or stutter when you’re moving to new areas, for example.
PSVR is important to Sony, and as such, PlayStation 5 will support the current PSVR headset. Will there be a new, more powerful, PSVR headset further down the line? Probably, but Sony isn’t ready to talk about it yet. Until then, be happy in the knowledge that you’ll be able to use your current headset with the PS5 when it launches, and that new VR games will continue to be made.
If you were worried that next-gen consoles would abandon physical media, don’t be. The PS5 will accept discs, just like the PS4 does. Whether or not they’ll be standard Blu-ray discs or the higher capacity ones used for UHD movies, however, has not been revealed.
Thanks to PlayStation 5 being based in part on the PS4’s architecture, it will be backwards compatible with PS4 games. That means you’ll still be able to play all those games you’ve amassed over the last few years courtesy of PS Plus and some fabulous sales. It also means you’ll be able to dive back into classics like God of War without having to get your old console out again. Whether or not PS4 games will be enhanced in any way when played on a PS5 remains a mystery at this point, but we hope they are. Just like how the PS4 Pro boost mode improves games that aren’t specifically PS4 Pro enhanced.
Services, features and price
Unfortunately, Sony isn’t ready to reveal any details about the services or features available on PS5 yet. It’s probably just too early for the company to have them set in stone. We’ll update this article when details are revealed, though. And that goes for the price of the PS5 console, too, which also hasn’t been revealed.
And so there you have it. That’s everything we currently know about the PS5. No doubt we’ll learn more throughout the rest of the year, though remember that Sony isn’t doing E3. One thing is for sure, we just can’t wait to find out more about Sony’s next-gen plans.