As we approach five years out from the initial launch of the PlayStation 4, history tells us it’s time to start digging for rumors about its successor, Sony’s inevitable PlayStation 5. Although the recent release of intra-generational upgrades with both the PlayStation 4 Pro and the Xbox One X led many to speculate that the age of discrete console generations might be coming to an end (or at least slowing down), there are nevertheless rumblings of varying credibility suggesting that Sony is already working on the PS5.
We’ve rounded up all the rumors floating around about the PlayStation 5, so you can judge for yourself.
When is it coming?
In May 2018, Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO John Kodera told reporters, “We will use the next three years to prepare the next step, to crouch down so that we can jump higher into the future.” This came shortly after he remarked that the PS4 was entering the “final phase of its life cycle.”
So while Sony is obviously thinking and working on the future, the PlayStation 5 won’t launch until at least 2021.
What are the specs?
One report claims the PS5 will feature a custom 8-core Zen CPU and a GPU based on AMD’s upcoming Navi architecture
The PlayStation 5 could use an AMD Ryzen processor. A note written by Simon Pilgrim, principal programmer of Sony’s Advanced Technology Group, revealed that he was working on improving compatibility between AMD Ryzen processors and “Zen” core architecture within the LLVM compiler stack. All of that may sound like gibberish, but the compiler stack is a key component of the development environment in PlayStation systems.
SemiAccurate’s Charlie Demerjian claims to have tangible details about PS5 devkits that are already in circulation (via WCCFTech). According to Demerjian, the PS5 will feature an 8-core Zen CPU and a GPU based on AMD’s upcoming Navi architecture (Hey! Listen!), both customized, of course.
We’ve known that Navi is likely coming in late 2018/early 2019 for several years now, but details are otherwise unavailable on its capabilities. Demerjian has a history of leaking accurate console specs, so his rumors are worth serious consideration.
On the other hand, in a report responding directly to Demerjian’s, Kotaku’s Jason Schreier said a source with knowledge of Sony’s plans said laughed the rumored specs were not accurate. According to Schreier’s reporting, early PS5 devkits may be out in the wild, but most developers seem to be unaware of them.
Improved VR support
In addition to under-the-hood power, Demerjian’s report also suggested that the PS5 will be built from the ground up with virtual reality support in mind. Although PSVR (or, frankly, VR in general) has not yet set the world on fire in the way that many optimistic analysts predicted it would circa 2016, Sony’s headset has been home to a few gems so far, and it’s still almost certainly the best value and most readily accessible, high-end consumer VR.
The PS4 Pro buffed up the base console’s specs in order to better support PSVR, but starting from scratch with VR as a core feature of the console will no doubt open up a lot of possibilities for developers.
Any word on games?
With no official announcement from Sony about the console, developers are remaining tight-lipped if they do have PS5 devkits in hand. Several have made comments that could be construed as hints that they do, however.
The Witcher 3 dev CD Projekt Red is hard at work on their next epic, Cyberpunk 2077. At a 2018 conference in Bergen, the studio heads gave a presentation about the game which included a slide with the phrase “Rich, true-to-life visuals built on current and next generation technology.” That could mean a lot of things, of course, but one could interpret that as a nod to the fact that they are simultaneously developing the game for both the current- and next-generation of consoles, of which the PS5 would have to be one.
Similarly, Gran Turismo Sport creator Kazunori Yamauchi made a comment that could suggest they are already tinkering with the PS5: On a studio tour, he told Finder.com that new cars take so long to develop because they are “building for future versions of the console rather than the one we see today.” He also mentioned that he thought it “would be no problem to run it at 8K even,” which is well above what even the PS4 Pro is capable of putting out.
Updated: Added comments made by John Kodera and info about the PS5’s specs.
- Sony’s next PlayStation may have an AMD Ryzen processor
- CD Projekt Red gives impressive first look at sprawling world of ‘Cyberpunk 2077’
- Here are the best PlayStation 4 deals and bundles for June 2018
- The best backward-compatible Xbox One games
- PlayStation boss says PS4 is reaching the final phase of its life cycle