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Sony unveil next-generation PlayStation 4

Press Release   •   Feb 21, 2013 11:05 GMT

Sony has announced its next-generation gaming console - the PlayStation 4 - at an event in New York, with the reinvented console, demonstrating faster, graphics-rich hardware with new Internet-based features to counter stiff competition from the Web and mobile devices.

It will succeed the PlayStation 3, which went on sale in 2006 and has sold about 75 million units. The PS4 will eventually compete against Microsoft's still-to-be-unveiled Xbox 360 successor and Nintendo's Wii U.

But all video game console makers are grappling with the onslaught of mobile devices into their turf.
Tablets and smartphones built by rivals such as Apple Inc and Samsung Electronics Co Ltd already account for around 10% of the $80 billion gaming market. Those mobile devices will within a few years be as powerful as the current slew of game-only consoles.

The Japanese electronics giant said its PlayStation 4 is designed to take advantage of new technologies for customers to play games and responds to the burgeoning popularity of smartphones and tablets in gaming.

Sony, while demonstrating the underlying hardware, didn't actually show the coming console, disclose its pricing or precisely when it will go on sale, though the company said it will be ready for the 2013 holiday season.

Sony also confirmed a range of big-name software for the machine including Bungie's upcoming "shared-world shooter" Destiny, which will include exclusive content for the PS4. The developer's previous title, Halo, helped drive sales for the rival Xbox platform.

Sony described the machine as being like a "supercharged" PC. It runs off an x86-based CPU (central processing unit) - similar architecture to that found in most desktop computers - and an "enhanced" PC GPU (graphics processing unit). Both CPU and GPU are designed by the US firm Advanced Micro Devices (AMD).

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