Sony Announces the PlayStation 4, Gamers all Over the World Rejoice!

Something tells me that 2013 will be a fantastic year for gamers and gaming enthusiasts, especially if Sony’s announcement of the PS4 is anything to go by!

The electronics giant announced earlier in February that the extremely-popular-but-aging PS3 – Sony’s best-selling video games console ever! – will be succeeded by the PS4, Sony’s next-generation gaming console, and the 4th refresh to it’s uber-popular PlayStation gaming consoles.

Sony targets a Q4 launch for the PS4, however given how these things usually go, whether the PS4 will actually see the light of day before the year ends remains to be seen.

But nonetheless, Sony’s latest console marks a much-needed refresh to the aging PS3 hardware. PS3, while being an extremely capable console in itself even today, and despite the fact that it’s been around for more than 6 years now (how time flies!), needed an upgrade pretty badly.

Thankfully, Sony obliged!

In case you missed the announcement, we’ve got you covered.

On paper, the PS4 looks pretty mouth-watering: the new console will have an 8-core (yes, that’s eight cores!) 64-bit AMD processor codenamed the Jaguar, 8 GB of super-quick DDR5 memory, and a custom built-for-PS4 AMD graphics processing unit (GPU), an enormous upgrade over the now-dated PS3 hardware! All this will be bundled with a Blu-ray drive, standard Wi-Fi connectivity, and an upgraded DualShock 4 controller. The console will of course be fully compatible with PlayStation Move.

ps4 dualshock 4 controller

Speaking of the controller, the all-new DualShock has also been on the receiving end of a (much-needed) overhaul. According to first impressions, it simply looks a whole lot cooler! It looks much more sleek and ergonomic, and perhaps the biggest addition to it is a touch-screen. Yes, the DualShock 4 will have a touch-screen onboard the controller itself, how cool is that! What this will be used for, or what use will it be put to remains to be seen though.

In addition, the PS4 will also have a built-in 3D camera, which will be connected to the controller and track the DualShock 4 controller at all times.

It should be noted that Sony has completely ditched the cell-based processor architecture used in the PS3 for a more developer-friendly x64 processor architecture for the PS4. This means that the console will have a processor similar to those found in high-end personal computers today. The biggest advantage of this will be for game developers and studios, as it will be much easier and much less-expensive to produce (or port) games to the PS4 now.

Sony also intends to release a PlayStation app for smartphones and tablets, which will allow smartphone/tablet owners to wireless connect their devices with the console and use them as second screens or even as auxiliary controllers in order to enhance the gameplay.

Recently, some new information about the PS 4’s user interface surfaced, courtesy Kotaku. You can go directly to their website and read all about it. In short, it looks like an improved version of their old UI, and looks quite good, pretty similar actually to the UI of the PlayStation Network.

ps 4 playstation 4 ui

Sony has said that it will integrate the console with social media, and provide a bunch of social features aimed at enhancing online and co-op gameplay. More details about it will probably surface with the passage of time, but it certainly sounds exciting.

One of the coolest things about this new console will be the ability to play games instantly, while they’re being downloaded! This would work in a way that is similar to how you watch streaming video on YouTube, for instance. Mind-blowing stuff!

In a nutshell, this eighth-generation console looks to be an absolute winner! It will give Nintendo’s Wii U some stiff competition, and If rumors about a possible Xbox 720/Durango release later this year are to be believed, Microsoft will really need to come up with something out of the ordinary (Microsoft too are said to be targeting a late-2013 release for their new Xbox console, codenamed Durango).

It’s a bit of a bummer that the PS4 won’t be backwards-compatible with PS3 games, although all previous-gen games will work via the Gaiki streaming technology, just not natively. I, for one, certainly would’ve loved to play good old Gran Turismo on the new hardware, but you can’t win ‘em all I guess.

We will be providing more information about the PS4 on this blog as it comes – and I’m sure we will see a lot of exciting new news and information surface in the days to come, including a confirmed release date and maybe a few images of the console itself, so watch this space!