There is still some debate over precisely when the PlayStation 5 will be released, with recent reports suggesting that it could be as early as next year. However, whether or not this is accurate, what we do know is that Sony will release a next-generation console sooner or later.
So what will the video games giant choose to include in the PlayStation 5, and what would keen gamers like to see included? Here is a wish list of possible PS5 features.
Probably the biggest and most important desire of gamers for the PlayStation 5 would be the implementation of 4K resolution at 60 frames per second. It is an absolute certainty that the PlayStation 5 will embrace native 4K, but if it could deliver AAA gaming titles at sixty frames per second in 4K then it would really be ahead of the competition.
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This would undoubtedly require a huge amount of processing power to be included in the console, and probably won’t be feasible if 2018 is indeed the release date. But if a 2020 timeframe is instead chosen then this begins to become possible, and gamers will undoubtedly be licking their lips at the promise of 4K 60FPS. Even forthcoming smartphones such as the Galaxy Note 8 promise 4K gaming in 2017, so Sony must bear this market trend in mind.
Tonnes of storage
4K gaming requires a huge amount of storage, and if Sony is serious about streaming and downloading of games becoming more mainstream then it must ensure that its next-generation console possesses a considerable amount of Disk. 1TB should be standard, but Sony could possibly also produce several models of the PlayStation 5 offering even more storage than this.
Multiple models of PlayStation 5
Speaking of multiple models, this should be central to the ethos of Sony in the PlayStation 5 generation, as consumers increasingly demand more choice in terms of base units, as evidenced by the smartphone marketplace. This could include a disc-free model, possibly at a more affordable price point, as streaming and downloading becomes more significant. However, Sony would be ill-advised to abandon physical media, even if it is clearly becoming less important, as the corporation’s unwillingness to embrace 4K Blu-ray indicates.
Backwards compatibility is always a nifty part of any console. And considering that the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 4 Pro have only released relatively recently, it would make sense for Sony to include backwards compatibility in the PlayStation 5 from day one. Sony is increasingly relying on streaming services in order to provide access to retro gaming, but Sony consumers would surely love to see disc-based PlayStation, PlayStation 2, PlayStation 3 and PlayStation 4 titles supported out of the box.
The PlayStation VR headset has been a successful unit for Sony, but it would be an excellent selling point of its next-generation console were some form of virtual reality functionality to be included. This could mean bundling at least some of the consoles with a virtual reality headset, or possibly even including the technology in a native fashion.
At present, virtual reality can still be seen as a niche technology, and is something of a gimmick, and if Sony intends to establish virtual reality as a central plank in its gaming strategy then it must increase its installed user base. Bundling virtual reality with a brand new PlayStation 5 console could be one way of achieving this.
AAA VR games
While integrated virtual reality and more promotion of this concept would be welcome, what would really revolutionize the genre would be the production of more AAA VR titles. There are some excellent VR games already available, but we have yet to see the biggest-selling and most popular titles really embrace virtual reality.
This is beginning to change slightly, but there are still major technical hurdles for any develop to circumnavigate before producing an AAA VR game. If the PlayStation 5 was to deliver the sort of power that makes it possible for mega-titles such as The Last of Us Part 2 to deliver VR from their release dates then this would be a massive boost to the PlayStation 5.
It has been suggested in some quarters that the PlayStation 5 could integrate with the hugely popular Steam platform in order to deliver a more flexible package. Whether this is something that Sony would seriously consider is debatable, but it is notable that Microsoft has been pushing the PC-compatible qualities of its Xbox range.
On the other hand, this may not particularly concern Sony as the PlayStation 4 has massively outsold the Xbox over the last few years anyway. But it will nonetheless have one eye on the increasingly prominent PC market.
While there has been little explicit suggestion that Sony will consider wireless charging for any of its console releases, it would undoubtedly be a welcome inclusion in a potential PlayStation 5 release. There is no technical reason why this couldn’t be achieved; after all, the controller utilized with the PlayStation 4 is indeed wireless. And wireless charging has proved popular in the smartphone marketplace, with Apple expected to implement an innovative new system for the iPhone 8.
It would undoubtedly be a very attractive proposition for gamers if their devices could be charged while not plugged in, and possibly even while games are being played, and this is something that Sony should seriously consider.
Major launch titles
Any console release is naturally dependent on games, and thus it is essential for Sony to ensure that the PlayStation 5 ships with some major launch titles. The release date for the aforementioned The Last of Us Part 2 has yet to be finalized, but if this could launch as a native PlayStation 5 title alongside the new console it would go a long way to ensuring that the machine is a commercial success.
Finally, although the PlayStation 5 promises to be a technology and gaming behemoth, the price of the unit will also be all important. The price tag of the Xbox Project Scorpio remains to be seen, but Sony would benefit hugely if it was able to match the retail price of its Microsoft rival.