Building on recent rumors that Sony has a more powerful version of PlayStation 4 hardware in the works — dubbed the “PlayStation 4.5” and “PlayStation 4K” — the Wall Street Journal is now reporting that Sony will make an official announcement about this more powerful PS4 prior to the launch of PlayStation VR this October.
According to the original report by Kotaku, this new PS4 will be able to output games and other content at 4K resolution, in addition to being able to run PlayStation VR games more efficiently than current PS4 hardware. The Wall Street Journal is also reporting that Sony will continue to manufacture old models alongside the new hardware.
Right now, the PS4 does not support 4K content, with its optical drive unable to support 4K Blu-ray discs. This more powerful PS4 would seemingly address this and also allow the playback of 4K video content from sources such as Netflix, with Netflix’s chief product officer telling Huffington Post UK in January that Sony ‘had’ promised them that a new version of PS4 hardware that supports 4K resolution was coming. Interestingly, Netflix also told Forbes in February that it expected Sony and Microsoft to release new versions of the PS4 and Xbox One with 4K capabilities.
Naturally, we’ll have to wait for confirmation from Sony to see what else to expect from an upgraded PS4 model, but the WSJ’s report that Sony will continue to manufacture the old models even after the new ones ship is interesting. Will there even be a need for the older version of the hardware once a better one is on the market? With no indication of what the new PS4’s price may be, we can only speculate at this point that it will be more expensive than the current model’s $349.99 price, which suggests that the latter will become Sony’s “budget” PS4 model.
PlayStation VR is due out this October and will cost $399, although that does not take into account the cost of the PlayStation Camera, which is a required accessory.