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In a wide-ranging interview with Japanese gaming bible Famitsu, Sony’s senior vice president of platform experience Hideaki Nishino hinted that 2023 will be “very important” for PS5. “I can’t talk about specifics at this time,” he said, via Google Translate, “but I hope you will look forward to next year.”

Nishino was asked about PS5’s stock problems, where he alluded to the aftermath of the console’s launch being more challenging than the lead-up to it. He pointed to lockdowns in cities like Shanghai as a huge headache for the firm, which has struggled to meet demand worldwide. He said that the situation was improving, however, and it aims to sell-through 37 million units by the end of March.

He then added that he believes next year will be “very important” for the platform, and pointed to the software schedule, which includes many key releases like Resident Evil 4 and Final Fantasy 16. He also addressed the idea that Sony has abandoned the Japanese market, and revealed it makes him “very sad” that people think that – but he said he accepts the opinion of fans, and is focused on changing that mind-set.

It’s now strongly rumoured that a revised PS5 hardware model will launch in 2023 with a detachable disc drive. This is allegedly already in the hands of some developers, and is said to work “flawlessly”. The innovative new hardware design will allow Sony to streamline its manufacturing process, effectively enabling it to ship more units, while also providing customers with more flexibility.