Sony is developing a new update to the hardware of the PS4 which is rumored to be called the “PS4.5” as a working titles. Per media sources, Sony has been holding the information closely until recently when they let game developers in on the news so that they can begin developing for an upcoming release that will more than likely coincide with the release of PSVR in the fall.
Take a closer look, if you will at why this is a great move for Sony. After their price drop last year, there is enough space to release a new piece of hardware for the previous $400 price range without having to push out to a difficult price point. With recent advances both in 4K technology and VR gaming, Sony will need a more powerful processor to keep up with some of the demands. As the sources state, the PS4 can play videos and show pictures in 4K now but the video side of the equations simply is not possible at this point.
New generation hardware upgrades are not a new thing for Sony as we saw significantly slimmer versions of both the PS2 and the PS3 in their life cycles. Both were wildly successful. One of the potential hurdles here could be the compatibility with the old PS4’s if there is a new wrinkle in the game development. Would the old PS4 no longer be able to play the newer high resolution games? If so what would Sony’s plan going forward be for current PS4 owners unwilling to make the move? These questions have to be rolling around in the minds of people much smarter than myself and it will be interesting to see how they are answered.
I have full confidence that moving forward is a sound decision based on the importance of pushing the envelope; however, I also have strong concerns about being left behind if Sony chooses to change their game development strategies.
One of the largest upsides to the upgraded hardware will be the potential game changing ability increases for PSVR. It’s not secret that Oculus has the upper hand in CPU power and raw performance, but depending on this hardware upgrade, the PS4.5 could make strong headway into breaking through the glass ceiling of performance restrictions that many have seen as a hurdle in the VR race. Only time will tell how intelligent this decision to take a leap of faith will be, but for this writer and gamer, I am excited to see the next steps in the evolution of something that I enjoy so much.
Not to be lost in the shuffle, these new rumors of the PS4.5 have brought about the already rumbling news of Microsoft’s own dealings with hardware upgrades for the Xbox One. If another hardware race is ramping up, look for competitive pricing to keep this new reach within a reasonable price range, which is good for gamers.
What do you think of a possible PS4.5 console? Let us know in the comments section below.