We still don't know what the next PlayStation is going to be called, but we do know it's coming and vaguely what's powering it. Sony is low on firm details surrounding the system, but the platform holder seems to be willing to talk about its vision for the future of PlayStation.
With the rise of alternative gaming delivery systems, including streaming services like Google Stadia and Microsoft's Project xCloud, or subscription services like Xbox Game Pass and EA Origin Access, Sony is rethinking how its next console is positioned. According to reporting by the Wall Street Journal, Sony sees Microsoft as its main competitor, with Google as a future threat as internet technology improves.
The next PlayStation will be focused on "graphics-heavy games," according to anonymous sources that spoke to the Wall Street Journal. The PlayStation 4 Pro was just the early harbinger of a shift in the company, away from the indies that were a boon for the PlayStation 4 and PlayStation Vita, toward the big triple-A titles that helped the PlayStation 4 obtain dominance. Sony is now focused on "strengthening relationships with large publishers since resources are limited."
This report backs up previous comments by Sony executives. "We believe this improvement clearly demonstrates why it makes sense to have a next-generation console, since the experience will greatly exceed what is possible on the current PS4 hardware, including PS4 Pro," said Sony CEO Kenichiro Yoshida during a May 2019 demo, which showed the Insomniac's Spider-Man running on a PlayStation 4 Pro and the next PlayStation.
Sony has already revealed that the next PlayStation will be powered by AMD's third-generation Ryzen and a custom variant of the Radeon Navi. Since that reveal, the platform holder has also revealed that the next console will be backward compatible with the PlayStation 4, and that Sony is looking more into game streaming itself.
Earlier today, Sony Interactive Entertainment president and CEO Jim Ryan admitted the company was looking into further studio acquisitions for next gen. That said, not every developer seems to be onboard with more powerful consoles, with PlatinumGames studio head Atsushi Inaba recently calling next-gen "more of the same".