During a corporate strategy meeting today John Kodera, PlayStation Boss, reportedly said that the PlayStation 4 is entering the end of its lifecycle. Kodera is reported to have said, according to Takashi Mochizuki reporting got the Wall Street Journal, that Sony will not be discontinuing the PlayStation 4 anytime soon. In fact they anticipate it to continue to sell well beyond upcoming exclusive releases Spider-Man and The Last of Us Part 2.
Some speculate that this news will have a negative impact on Sony’s gaming division in terms of sales, as fans wait to invest in the next console Sony produce rather than a PlayStation 4, or PlayStation 4 Pro. If there is a negative impact it will almost certainly be offset by the income from PlayStation Plus subscriptions and other services such as PlayStation Now.
This news may have something to do with the lower expected sales of PlayStation 4 units for this year. Earlier in 2018 Sony stated that they are now expecting to sell 16 million units of the PlayStation 4, which is down from 19 million in the previous year. Kodera could be discussing the end of the console’s lifecycle as a way of demonstrating that the PlayStation 4 only has a few viable years of sales left. This doesn’t indicate that Sony intend to release a new console in the near future, but it does show that they are planning for a downturn in sales as the console moves on from its sales peak.
The PlayStation 4 is now almost 5 years old, having launched in November 2013. The PlayStation 3 reached 80 million units sold by 2013, having launched 7 years previously in 2006, and the PlayStation 4 has already sold 79 million by Sony’s count. The PlayStation 4 is on track to be Sony’s most successful home console, and should have at least two more years of viability left, if not more thanks to the release of the PlayStation 4 Pro.
Kodera is also reported as saying there will be a time when PlayStation crouches down to stand taller in the future. It’s not clear as to what this means, but Shawn Layden, PlayStation Executive, did confirm that there will be no hardware announcements at this year’s Sony E3 2018 conference.
It was rumoured earlier this year that PlayStation 5 dev kits had been sent out to developers, but no confirmation has ever been made on this rumour.