The Sony PlayStation 4 is getting a little long in the tooth. What was once state of the art (for a gaming console) back in 2013 is now headed towards the end of its current lifecycle. That last statement actually comes directly from Sony PlayStation chief John Kodera.
Kodera made the comments during Sony’s Corporate Strategy Meeting, which were then translated into English.
PS chief Kodera: PS4 is entering final phase of its life cycle, which would have negative impact to the unit, but recurring revenue via membership services etc should cushion some of that.
— Takashi Mochizuki (@mochi_wsj) May 22, 2018
As a result of the PlayStation 4’s “advanced” age, there is expected to be a negative impact on the gaming division’s hardware sales, which will be countered somewhat by subscription services like PlayStation Plus. Kodera also confirmed that despite being in the twilight of its existence, the company is promising new exclusive titles to help the PlayStation 4/PlayStation 4 Pro maintain its dominant lead over the Xbox One and Xbox One X.
With that being said, what about the future of PlayStation hardware? Sony is surely already far along in development of the inevitable PlayStation 5, and we’re all dying to know what will power the console. Luckily, the folks over Phoronix have uncovered a pretty big clue as to where Sony is likely headed. Simon Pilgrim, one of Sony’s compiler gurus, has been making quite a few commits to the LLVM github recently. Pilgrim has specifically been working on the LLVM compiler stack for “znver1”, which refers to the first-generation AMD Ryzen processor architecture.
“On Friday he submitted a cleanup for the znver1 code, last week were more Znver1 changes across multiple commits, and these upstream Znver1 LLVM improvements by this Sony programmer have been going back at least two weeks with this just not being some one-off cleanup attempt,” writes Phoronix.
It should be noted that given its age, the PlayStation 4 obviously is not based around Ryzen architecture (it actually uses a custom version of AMD’s Jaguar CPU architecture). However, we could clearly see Sony looking in that direction for its successor, perhaps even with custom second-generation Ryzen 2000 series CPUs or APUs.
Of course, this is all still speculation and conjecture at this stage in the game, but it is increasingly looking like AMD will continue to provide the brains behind Sony’s future console.