Sony Corp unveiled its first video game console in seven years on
Wednesday that will let users stream and play video games hosted on
servers, hoping the move will help stem user losses, pre-empt the next
version of Microsoft's Xbox and propel it back to the top of the
videogame hardware industry.
The company revealed its PlayStation 4
console, which will succeed the PlayStation 3, at a flashy event in New
York with game developers like Ubisoft and Activision Blizzard in
Sony said the console would be available for the holiday 2013 season. It did not immediately disclose pricing.
The console will be up against the next version of the industry-leading Xbox console, which is expected later this summer.
controller on the new console dubbed "DualShock 4" will have a touch
pad, Mark Cerny, lead system architect on PlayStation 4, said.
purchased U.S. cloud-based gaming company Gaikai for $380 million in
July. Using that technology, the new console will offer a cloud-gaming
service, the company said.
The 8GB PlayStation 4, which has been
in development for the last five years, can also instantly stream game
content from the console to Sony's handheld PlayStation Vita through a
feature called "Remote Play," the company said.
Sony has also
revamped the user interface on the new console that keeps tabs on user
preferences and added social networking features.
announcement comes amid industry speculation that Microsoft is set to
unveil the successor to its Xbox 360 later this summer. The
market-leading Xbox 360 beats the seven-year-old PlayStation 3's online
network with features such as voice commands on interactive gaming and
superior connectivity to smartphones and tablets.
Gaining a lead
over Microsoft's Xbox and Nintendo Co Ltd's new Wii U could help Sony
revive an electronics business hurt by a dearth of hit gadgets, a
collapse in TV sales and the convergence of consumer interest around
tablets and smartphones built by rivals Apple Inc and Samsung
Electronics Co Ltd.
Tablets and smartphones already account for
around 10 percent of the $80 billion gaming market. Those mobile
devices, analysts predict, will within a few years be as powerful as the
current slew of game-only consoles.
After six years, Sony
PlayStation sales are just shy of Xbox's 67 million installed base and
well behind the 100 million units of Wii sold by Nintendo, according to
© Thomson Reuters 2013