Rumors cite ‘several sources’ that indicate that the upgraded PlayStation 4, PlayStation Neo, will launch this year, despite skipping E3.
Heading into the event, many expected the upgraded PlayStation 4, known by its codename PlayStation Neo and nicknamed PlayStation 4.5 by fans, to be a major part of the Sony’s E3 2016 press conference. Shortly before the show, however, Sony confirmed that PlayStation Neo wouldn’t be present, leading to speculation that the console was further off than once assumed. However, new reports indicate that even though PlayStation Neo skipped E3, it’s still set for release by the end of 2016.
These reports come from “several sources” that leaked the news to Eurogamer. Unfortunately, the sources were unable to divulge any other information about the device, like if it’s true that the console has 4K resolution capabilities or if it will be significantly more powerful than the current PS4 models.
The sources also didn’t indicate an exact release window for the device, except that it will launch by the end of the year. We also don’t know when Sony plans on pulling the curtain back on PlayStation Neo, as E3 seemed like it would have the best time to do so. However, with Gamescom, Paris Games Week, and the Tokyo Game Show all on the horizon, there’s a chance Sony will appear at one of those venues to unveil the new hardware. Sony also could host its own event for the Neo reveal, much in the same way it did with the PS4 unveiling.
While this information should be taken with a grain of salt, if the PlayStation Neo does launch this year it could be a good thing for Sony and potentially a bad thing. On the one hand, launching PlayStation Neo this year means the console won’t have to compete with Project Scorpio or the Nintendo NX, which could result in more sales.
On the other hand, launching PlayStation Neo this year means Microsoft has extra time to evaluate the device, and ensure that Project Scorpio is the more powerful console when it releases during the holiday season of 2017. To that end, releasing it this year potentially means splitting sales between it and PlayStation VR, as some that would have otherwise upgraded to PlayStation Neo may instead opt to pick up Sony’s virtual reality headset instead.
Some may be wondering what the point of PlayStation Neo even is, as PlayStation 4 is still a relevant and powerful machine. All of Sony’s E3 demos ran on PS4s, not PlayStation Neos, and the console continues to dominate sales charts month after month. Considering this, it will be interesting to see if its added power is enough to convince current PlayStation 4 owners and last-gen holdouts tp upgrade to PlayStation Neo this year, or if it will ultimately struggle to sell as much as the original PS4 hardware.
PlayStation Neo is rumored to be available for purchase by the end of 2016.