Sony doesn't really announce hardware at E3. There are exceptions: the PlayStation Move was hastily wheeled out a few years ago in reaction to the Kinect, while the ill-fated but kinda awesome PSPgo was also confirmed during one Los Angeles show. But most of its big system reveals tend to occur elsewhere: the PlayStation 4 was announced in New York, the PlayStation 3 Slim at Leipzig, and the PlayStation Vita and PlayStation 3 Super Slim in Tokyo. Are you noticing a pattern?
The so-called PlayStation 4K – or Neo, as it's supposedly codenamed – is about as close to being legit as you can get. While it's technically still a rumour at this stage, dozens of sources have confirmed the device – and we've even been able to read developer documentation for the upcoming console. The Japanese giant could still pull the plug on the project at the very last minute, but that seems incredibly unlikely at this stage. It's real, and it's probably launching this year.
What we know is that developers will be required to submit Neo compatible software this October. For those who haven't been keeping up to date – and we have a full rundown of all of the rumours that you can read here – all upcoming PS4 software will work in two formats: Base mode and Neo mode. This essentially means that those with the upgraded PS4K will get enhanced performance, while all games will still continue to be compatible with the bog-standard PS4 that's out now.
Sony probably would have preferred to wait to announce the PS4K, but leaks have probably twisted its arm
If the platform holder's mandating Neo support in October, then it stands to reason that the new console will launch around then, doesn't it? In fact, there have been several retail leaks suggesting that Sony's new system will indeed deploy around that date. Which leaves us with the one remaining question in the headline of this article: will the manufacturer announce the PS4K during its E3 2016 press conference in a couple of weeks?
We reckon that it's going to have to. The problem with revealing hardware that's still several months off is that it can have a habit of killing off existing sales, but with the rumours so revealing, we're not entirely sure how Sony's going to get through an entire convention without mentioning a console that everyone knows exists. It needs to set the record straight anyway – even though the PS4K has been a hot topic of discussion for three months now, the manufacturer's yet to have its say.
There's also going to be mounting pressure from Microsoft, with rumours suggesting that it's going to reveal its own iterative hardware model at E3. If the murmurs are correct, the Redmond-based manufacturer is really going to gamble, announcing a device over a year away. While speculation suggests that this will be more powerful than the PS4K, it's a real risk talking about it so early, as it could really destroy the momentum of its current machine.
It looks like that's something that both manufacturers are going to have to accept, though. In our opinion, Sony probably would have preferred to wait until Gamescom or the Tokyo Game Show to announce the PS4K, but leaks and rumours have probably twisted its arm. We reckon that it will be outlined at E3 2016, and it's going to be fascinating to see how it pitches the unit. The rumours have probably helped prepare people for the reveal, but it's still got to get its messaging spot on.
Do you think that the PS4K will be announced at E3 2016? If not, why not? And if so, how do you think that Sony will position the platform? See things more clearly in the comments section below.
Will Sony announce the PS4K at E3 2016? (50 votes)
Yes, of course it will
I'm honestly not sure
No, I think it will wait
Please login to vote in this poll.