President of Sony Computer Entertainment Andrew House recently spoke to Nikkei and had some big words for console cycles. He says that the days of using a business model of releasing a new console every 4-6 years are gone. We’re still translating the interview so forgive us for any errors. We’ll correct them as they become apparent.
Here’s a rough translation of what House said in his interview with Nikkei:
“Game consoles connecting to online networks is now the norm. The value of a console increases by connecting to an online network. Former business models that rely on switching to new generations of hardware on a several year basis have ended because of this. We expect our online sales for this year to be 1.5 times greater than last. Particularly, the number of users that have been paying via methods other than a credit card have been increasing. Even the common user now realizes the attraction of downloading games to play.”
Sony recently stated that they plan to support the PS3 for at least a few more years, perhaps through 2015. They’v stated multiple times that they want the PS3 to have a ten year lifespan, much like the PS2. While I don’t doubt that the PS3 will still be a formidable console in 2015 I imagine the PS4 will be released by then.
It’s sort of ironic that the President of SCE is saying that making a new console every 4-6 years just because you can isn’t a good thing when all speculation points to the PS4 being revealed and releasing next year. That would be 7 years after the PS3, so I guess by House’s math the PS4 would not have an issue releasing next year.
Does this mean the PS4 is less likely to come out in 2013? No, but Sony sure it taking a long time to reveal their new console. For example they teased the PS3 in 2004 and revealed it in 2005. The PS2 was revealed in 1999 about one year before release too. So if they follow that trend and reveal the PS4 at E3 2013 then a 2014 release date wouldn’t be out of the question.