In an interview with the Financial Times, Sony Interactive Entertainment president and global chief executive Andrew House confirmed that the PlayStation 4 ‘Neo’ is real. But don’t expect to see it next week at the E3 conference in Los Angeles. House has said Sony doesn’t plan to unveil it at E3.
Rumors of a more powerful PlayStation 4 codenamed ‘Neo’ started emerging in March on Kotaku. The new console is supposed to be much more powerful than the existing PlayStation 4 in order to support more demanding games, and especially for the PlayStation VR headset.
Virtual reality is quite demanding when it comes to computing power. If you want a smooth experience, you need to run a game at a consistent frame rate above 60 frames per second. And because the screen in your VR headset is so close to your face, you want a good resolution as well. That’s why the PS4 can support the PlayStation VR, but the PS4 ‘Neo’ is the console you want for virtual reality (at least if you don’t have a beefy computer).
House basically confirmed all of these rumors and also said it would be a good console for people with a 4K TV, as the new PlayStation should be the first 4K-enabled console.
Now, let’s talk about the disappointing parts. First, rumor has it that Sony will launch this new PlayStation 4 before the holiday season. E3 seemed like a good opportunity to unveil the new device, but House gave this interview to the Financial Times just before E3 so people don’t get disappointed when Sony doesn’t talk about it during its press conference on Monday.
Second, the PS4 ’Neo’ is going to be more expensive than the existing $350 PlayStation 4. Both devices will remain in stores as the new console won’t replace the old.
And that brings us to the last point. Many gamers have been wondering what it means if you already have a PlayStation 4. Are you going to be left behind? House wants to be reassuring and said that all games going forward are going to be compatible with the old PlayStation 4. They’ll just be more beautiful on the PS4 ‘Neo’.
Microsoft is also working on updated Xbox One consoles. The company could announce a slimmer, cheaper Xbox One at next week’s E3 conference. And next year, rumor has it that Microsoft will release a more powerful Xbox One — even more than the PS4 ‘Neo’.