Microsoft and Sony May Launch Next-Gen Consoles in 2012 - Rumour

Game Developers Shift Focus to Next-Generation PlayStation, Xbox

by Anton Shilov
11/16/2011 | 01:36 PM

It is not a secret that Sony Computer Entertainment is developing the next-generation PlayStation 4 and there are hints that Microsoft Corp. is also working on the next-gen Xbox Loop. What is surprising is that the video game systems may hit the market as early as in 2012.


Ubisoft Montreal is working on a future title on target boxes that simulate next-gen Xbox consoles, which will succeed the Xbox 360, according to a report from Edge Online. The very first actual development kits are projected reach software designers by the end of 2011 and there signs that point to the “finalized console arriving at retail in late 2012”. Neither Microsoft nor Ubisoft commented on the “rumour and speculation”.

The same report claims that a “major Sony-owned studio has now ceased PlayStation 3 development” and has shifted its entire focus to the console’s successor, the PlayStation 4, which is in development these days. The studio is also helping to develop the next-generation graphics processing technology for the PS4, probably in terms of definition of exact specifications. While nobody outside SCE knows when exactly the PlayStation 4 hits the market, there are high chances that the system will be available no later than by holiday season in 2013. Sony also did not comment on the unofficial information.

So far only Nintendo confirmed that it would release its next-gen Wii U game console in 2012. Although the device will barely beat existing PS3 and X360 in terms of features and performance, neither Microsoft nor Sony will like a situation when they do not have leading-edge game systems. As a result, it makes sense for both to work maximally hard and release their next-gen systems in calendar 2012. The launch of the next-gen consoles will not only steal momentum from Wii U, but will establish Microsoft and Sony as indisputable game console technology leaders.

It is noteworthy that both Microsoft and Sony wanted to maintain unprecedented ten years lifecycles for Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3. Nonetheless, those cycles are unlikely to make a lot of sense with the release of the next-gen systems in 2012 – 2013 timeframes.