There are still a few big-name titles on the horizon for Xbox 360 and PS3 owners, but the next generation of consoles is very much on the minds of informed consumers. Reports claim that Microsoft will have their new gaming system ready by the end of the year, but Sony may be eager to beat them to the punch in order to prevent the house of Bill Gates from securing another 361 day head start. With speculation beginning to build leading up to February’s Destination PlayStation event and a possible PlayStation 4 reveal, Kaz Hirai, global chief executive of Sony, has thrown a kink in PlayStation fans’ hopes.

During a recent interview with The Times, Hirai was asked what his company’s plans were for the PlayStation 4 and what the console’s current release window may be. Kaz, who may or may not have been intentionally trying to throw off the eager journalist, then questioned why Sony would show their hand before Microsoft can show theirs.

“Why go first when your competitors can look at your specifications and come up with something better?”

While this response poses a conundrum for previous reports, it’s no secret that development on the PS4 (codenamed Orbis) is already well under way. Rumors have even surfaced recently that state that Sony will be dropping the classic DualShock for a touchscreen controller that’s reminiscent of the Wii U GamePad, so it’s not safe to rule out a pre-E3 unveiling just yet.

Meanwhile, Microsoft’s Larry ‘Major Nelson’ Hyrb has posted a countdown clock that’s measuring the exact time remaining until Microsoft’s big E3 2013 press conference, and, presumably, the confirmation of a successor to the Xbox 360. So if Harai isn’t simply throwing suspicious gamers off the PS4’s scent, the system likely won’t be announced until all of the world’s gaming elite have their attention turned to Los Angeles later this June.

Revealing the PlayStation 4 months ahead of the Xbox 720, however, still remains a viable tactic. Not only would it allow Sony to focus on the price and release date info during E3, but it would give them more time to highlight the exclusive content that would be arriving on the system. Of course, that’s really only a good idea if the console is ready to ship prior to the end of the year — which a majority of people believe both the Xbox 720 and PS4 will be.

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Source: CVG