Joshua.Smith | On 20, Feb 2013
Today’s the big day!
Sony has sent out invitations to media requesting their presence at 6pm EST to make a big announcement. That announcement is…unknown at this time, but as we sit here at the tail-end of the longest console cycle to date, fans worldwide are expecting the unveiling of the Playstation 4. The event is even being live-streamed, indicating that Sony believes it is an important announcement to show, live, to a worldwide audience of potentially millions.
But what if it’s not the PS4?
It’s been heavily rumored that developers are already working with dev-kits with specifications of the next console, so what happens if Sony doesn’t announce their next console today?
Anarchy, that’s what.
Sony, while maintaining a large market-share worldwide compared to Microsoft and the Xbox, didn’t release the Playstation 3 until well after Microsoft had put out the Xbox 360. Despite the hardware issues that the latter had, Sony still had to make up enormous amounts of ground to catch Microsoft.
Some argue that they still haven’t.
Microsoft has taken a large chunk of Sony’s revenue and market share due to their Xbox Live Gold service and the agreements reached with games like Call of Duty to deliver content on Xbox first. If Sony created this hype of their own volition and doesn’t deliver a next-generation console, odds are a social media storm of epic proportions will rain down upon them. Even Xbox players are eagerly anticipating the announcement, because that means Microsoft would have to show their hand and make an announcement.
And if they do make the announcement, what can we expect to see? There are certainly rumors and speculation, most of which revolve around hardware and software integration. First, Sony has tried to establish themselves in the handheld market, albeit with limited results. With smartphones and Nintendo paving the way for handheld gaming, Sony has had a steep mountain to climb. Although by all accounts their newest handheld, the Vita, is a fantastic piece of hardware. Which is why rumors are abound that Sony will make a move to further implement the Vita with the overall PS4 experience.
Second is the intriguing acquisition of Gaikai, the cloud gaming service. Similar to OnLive, Gaikai allows games to be streamed directly from the cloud with little downloading required. As technology moves forward, our internet access expands and gets faster. These innovations allow companies to focus on delivering content to customers in easier ways — what’s easier than sitting at your house and purchasing a game immediately at release?
And finally, what about games? Sony released two first party games for the PS3 in 2012. Two. Dos. In a console market that relies heavily on exclusive titles, two games in a 12-month period is unacceptable. Sony needs to dazzle the audience fast and often. Familiar titles like Uncharted, inFamous, and Gran Turismo need to be unveiled in order to give fans something to anticipate.
So tonight, at 6pm EST on Sony’s blog the gaming community will hold its collective breath as “the announcement” is made. Tonight, we’ll see the Playstation 4. We have to.
We’ll be following the conference live and updating the comment section as the announcements are made. Definitely come back this evening to share your excitement and opinions on what should be an awesome evening for gamers everywhere!
Watch it live: