There's now even more reason to speculate about the next Sony console after a new report says one principal programmer at Sony is working on improvements for AMD's Ryzen technology. Some say these improvements could be related to the development of the PlayStation 5.
Linux website Phoronix first reported that a PlayStation programmer, who's been with the company for 10 years, is currently doing work on the "znver1," AMD Zen core's micro-architecture support within the LLVM compiler. This is important because the LLVM CPU compiler is currently used in the PS4 development kit, but the Ryzen tech in question is not actually present in any PS4 product presently.
This has led to suggestions that the work Sony is doing, fine-tuning a dev tool for a new processor not found in any existing Sony hardware, is actually being done for a future product. The theory is only compounded by the knowledge that it's likely Sony will go with AMD systems for the PS5 as Sony's PS4 already uses a AMD Jaguar eight-core CPU and AMD Radeon GPU.
Our friends at Digital Foundry go one step further by saying that the evidence suggests Ryzen will "form a key component of a new console." As Richard Leadbetter explains, "the idea of Sony staff working on a compiler and improving hardware support for a technology it doesn't use in any of its current machines," possibly confirms a major component of the PS5.
Sources familiar with PlayStation development did reach out to Digital Foundry with caution, saying that Sony R&D members do work on projects unrelated to PlayStation hardware design. So even if developers work closely with Sony or even game developers, it might not be for the PlayStation.
What we do know is that the PlayStation 4 is nearing the end of its current generation cycle. Sony said as much at this morning's investors briefing. However, we also don't expect any PS5 announcements at E3 2018 either as Sony confirmed there will be no new hardware announcements this year.
Yet with rumors of PS5 pre-production swiring and dev kits reportedly being sent out, it's only a matter of time before we get wind of what's happening over at Sony and its next generation of consoles. We also have our own theories about Sony's next console which you can read about in our everything we know about the PS5 guide.