PS4 is in “Final Phase” of its Life Cycle, Says Sony CEO

The PS4 is on its way out, according to Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO John Kodera, with the console now being in the “final phase” of its life cycle. With many speculating about the arrival of the PS5, Kodera’s comments are some of the first to address the status of the PS4 and point towards a future beyond it.

Kodera was speaking at the Sony IR Day 2018 in Tokyo, Japan, with the heads of the company discussing the future of the PlayStation brand. While the PS4 is still performing incredibly well and has a bunch of major releases on the way, Sony is aware that its sales are winding down. However, Kodera was keen to stress that revenue from membership services such as the PlayStation Network will “cushion” some of the blow, meaning that PS4 profits shouldn’t experience a drastic decline.

While Kodera and Sony is planning for life after the PS4, that doesn’t mean that the company will be dropping its support of the console anytime soon. With the likes of The Last of Us 2 and Spider-Man on their way, Kodera also stated that even more exclusive titles would make their way to the PS4, while it will also be looking to expand its first-party titles. Along with creating new IP, Sony also wants to franchise successful IPs and refresh existing IPs, according to reporter Takashi Mochizuki.

Not everything is going swimmingly for Sony. The PSVR is “growing,” though the growth of the virtual industry is “below market expectations” meaning that Sony has a “realistic outlook” for the headset. Sony’s PS Vue streaming service is also struggling to compete in an over-saturated market.

Most interestingly, Kodera said that PlayStation would “crouch down once” between now and March 2021 before rising again in the future. This could point to Sony’s plans for the PS5’s launch, though new hardware wasn’t mentioned during the conference.

Sony has stated that it will be primarily focusing on announced games such as Death Stranding and the aforementioned The Last of Us 2 during E3 2018, and the PS4’s continued success likely means we’re some ways off from seeing a new console. However, it’s interesting to hear that Sony is preparing for a future without the PS4, and to gain some insight into where the company is headed.