After years of waiting, we could be less than three weeks away from getting official confirmation that the Playstation 4 is coming.
Sony has announced a press conference in New York for February 20 that will address “the future of Playstation.” It hasn’t officially confirmed this will be where the announcement takes place (which would be somewhat redundant), but most analysts are convinced that’s the purpose of the event. It would certainly fit the launch pattern of previous Playstation devices.
The company has even gone as far as to produce a teaser video trailer for the event, though it has absolutely no detail whatsoever in it.
The announcement has prompted further speculation about when the PS4 will actually show up. The Wall Street Journal says that “people familiar with the matter” (most likely Sony staff speaking anonymously) claim the new console will be released before Christmas — and perhaps just as importantly, before the next generation Xbox debuts.
The main thing to watch out for at the press conference will be if Sony unveils any fundamental changes to the design and functionality of the console. Suggestions that the PS4 would have no optical drive and only run downloaded games are no longer looking credible.
Most reports instead suggest the basic of the console (hard drive, Blu-Ray player, 1080p output) will be much the same as the PS3. Instead the main difference will be an upgrade to the processor and memory, with talk of a quad-core AMD processor and 2GB of RAM, compared to the 256MB (plus 256MB for graphics) in the PS3. Don’t be surprised if you start hearing the phrase “PS3 on steroids” later this month.
On the games side, there are a couple of more tenuous rumors. A 3D artist for Ubisoft Annecy reportedly updated his online CV to mention that he’d been working on a PS4 game (which frankly shouldn’t be much of a shock to anyone.) Meanwhile speculation that the delay of the new Grand Theft Auto game to September shows RockStar plans to quickly follow it with a next-generation console edition looks as if it might be a case of adding Take-Two and Take-Two and getting GTA V.