Sony introduced the PlayStation 4 to the gaming world at the PlayStation 2013 meeting in New York Wednesday.
The next-generation console brings the PlayStation to the next level with improved graphics, social integration, cloud technology and second-screen abilities. Sony announced the PS4 will be available in stores this holiday season.
The PS4 is powered by an eight core x86 CPU with a custom graphics processor that uses GDDR5 memory. The GPU contains 18 complete units that combine to generate 1.84 Teraflops of processing power for graphics and simulation tasks or a mixture of the two.
Aside from the high graphical capabilities from the computing system, the PS4 will come with a Blu-ray disc drive and HDMI port. A hard drive is also included but the company has not announced how much memory it will have.
Gaikai, the cloud gaming service Sony purchased, will play a major role in the PS4. Sony plans to make portions of games immediately playable on the PlayStation Store and hinted at the possibility of streaming the back catalog of PlayStation games.
Sony is also combining efforts with the service to allow gamers to stream their live gameplay to friends across the globe. Using services such as Ustream, players will be able to broadcast their game session live and interact with friends watching the footage. A share feature directly on the remote will enable users to stream gameplay or scan through the last few minutes of gameplay footage to share with friends directly or upload onto social media sites like Facebook.
The PS4 will integrate second-screen features compatible with the PS Vita, iPhone, iPad and Android devices. Remote Play connects the console to the Vita via WiFi, allowing gamers to play games directly on the Vita screen. Sony is aiming to make every PS4 game playable on the Vita. Users connecting to a mobile device using the PlayStation App will not be able to play remotely but can use their Apple or Android device as a second screen.
A unique suspend mode keeps the PS4 in a low power state while players preserve their game session. Similar to sleep mode on a computer, players will be able to jump right back into the game at the point they left off when they want to play again. The system also supports multi-tasking so users will be able to suspend play while exploring a web browser or watching a movie through Netflix.
The console will allow for background updates and downloads. It can also download items when in stand-by mode. Digital titles being purchased can be played as the download is being finished.
Sony also unveiled a new user interface for the PS4. Users will be able to browse through friends lists, sort through recommended content and watch new content through apps. Based on player history, the PS4 will predict what gamers are interested in and pre-load the game before it is purchased.
The PS4 is set to release this holiday season. No exact launch date or price details have been revealed.