July 15, 2020

Sony PlayStation 5: Everything you need to know (Update: India launch)

Update: Looks like India could get the PlayStation 5 around the same time as the US.

playstation 5 hardware

Update, July 6, 2020 (5:06AM ET): Looks like we have a release timeline for the PlayStation 5 in India. We’ve updated the original article below to reflect the new information. Read on for all you need to know about the new console.


Original article, March 19, 2020 (1AM ET): Sony’s critically acclaimed PlayStation line of gaming consoles is coming. Called the PlayStation 5, or just PS5 for short, this next console will arrive before the end of 2020 and it has some pretty big shoes to fill.

Its predecessor — the PlayStation 4 — is one of the most popular gaming consoles of all time. Sony sold more than 106 million units as of January 2020. The PlayStation 2 is the only home gaming console to surpass those numbers, selling more than 150 million units in its lifetime.

Surely Sony is looking for a home run with its next-generation console. But will it pack enough punch to woo gamers around the world as the PS4 did?

Here’s everything we know about the PS5 so far. Be sure to bookmark this page as we’ll update it as new information comes to light.

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Name and design

Sony’s next-generation gaming console will be called the PlayStation 5, or PS5 for short. Every prior iteration has adopted that naming scheme, and the company has referred to it as such in all of its press releases, marketing information, and announcements etc.

Sony finally revealed the PS5 design in full at the June 11 reveal event. The console — as seen above — is designed to stand vertically (but can be laid horizontally) and sports a black and white design that matches the DualSense controller. The design event revealed that Sony plans to launch two versions of the PS5 — the standard console as well as a slimmer Digital Edition that removes the optical drive.

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As far as the PlayStation 5 controller is concerned, we got a look at the official controller before the console. Sony is calling it DualSense, and it’s the largest design departure from any PlayStation controller before. Check it out:

playstation 5 dualsense ps5 controller official

Sony

As you can see, it features a new futuristic black and white design. Sony also revealed that the controller touts haptic feedback, adaptive triggers, and a built-in microphone array. It also comes with a USB-C charging port, and Sony is replacing the Share button with a brand new Create button, though it has not revealed what it does yet.

There is no word on standalone pricing yet, but we can expect to see it launch alongside the PS5 this holiday season.

PS5 specs

Sony PlayStation 5 main custom IO unit

In Sony’s recent system architecture deep-dive, the company revealed some of the details about this technology, as well as other hardware details about the upcoming console. According to the PlayStation 5 Lead System Architect Mark Cerny, the PS5 will tout some serious improvements over the PS4.

Here’s a complete overview of the PS5’s specs list compared to the PS4’s:

 PlayStation 5PlayStation 4
CPU8x Zen 2 Cores at 3.5GHz with SMT (variable frequency)8x Jaguar Cores at 1.6GHz
GPU10.28 TFLOPs, 36 CUs at 2.23GHz (Custom RDNA 2 architecture)1.84 TFLOPs, 18 CUs at 800MHz (Custom GCN architecture)
RAM16GB GDDR6/256-bit8GB GDDR5/256-bit
Internal StorageCustom 825GB SSD500GB HDD
Expandable StorageNVMe SSD slotReplaceable internal HDD
External StorageUSB HDD supportUSB HDD support
IO Throughput5.5GB/s (Raw), Typical 8-9GB/s (Compressed)Approx 50-100MB/s (dependent on data location on HDD)
Memory Bandwidth448GB/s176GB/s
Optical Drive4K UHD Blu-ray DriveBlu-ray Drive

The deep-dive revealed a lot more about the PS5’s future capabilities too. We can expect an upgraded CPU in the form of the AMD Zen 2, which touts eight cores clocked at 3.5GHz. This should provide significant performance gains over the PS4’s eight-core Jaguar 1.6GHz CPU. The PS5’s custom AMD RDNA 2 GPU is also a solid upgrade over last gen’s custom GCN GPU.

This CPU and GPU combination will allow the PS5 to utilize ray tracing acceleration. Ray tracing is advanced lighting tech that can take in-game graphics to a whole new level by more realistically mimicking the way light behaves in an environment.

We also learned the PlayStation 5 will sport a proprietary 825GB SSD, and it will support off-the-shelf NVMe SSD expandability. Not only does that mean users will be able to easily expand their PS5’s storage, but it should also offer faster load speeds, allowing for bigger maps, as well as better system memory management.

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The last major thing Sony revealed during the PS5 deep-dive is the console’s new custom AMD compute unit-based Tempest Engine. Using custom Head-related Transfer Function (HRTF) maps, this new tech should allow gamers to experience high-quality 3D in-game audio with even the most basic headphones or speakers. Cerny admitted the Tempest Engine is still in the early stages, and it may take years for it to fully develop.

At launch, customers will be able to select from one of five custom HRTF maps that best fits their sound profile. Cerny went on to hint at how Sony could possibly expand on this tech in the future.

“Maybe you’ll be sending us a photo of your ear, and we’ll choose a neural network to pick the closest HRTF in our library,� said Cerny. “Maybe you’ll be sending us a video of your ears and your head, and we’ll make a 3D model of them and synthesize the HRTF [or] you’ll play an audio game to tune your HRTF, we’ll be subtly changing it as you play and home in on the HRTF [that] matches you the best.�

Games

What makes any given console better than the next? It’s the games, baby.

Don’t miss: The full list of confirmed and rumored Sony PlayStation 5 games

At launch, the PS5 will be backward compatible with nearly every single game in the PS4’s library. At first, the company claimed that it would work with nearly all top 100 titles from the previous generation console. But in a recent blog post, the company announced it will be compatible with “the overwhelming majority of the 4,000+ PS4 titles.�

Not only that, Sony believes most PS4 titles will likely benefit from higher, more stable frame rates and higher resolutions on the PS5. It can’t guarantee every game will work, but it has already tested hundreds of titles with thousands more to come.

The PlayStation 5 will be backward compatible with nearly every PlayStation 4 title at launch.

For the full list of confirmed PlayStation 5 titles, head to this link here. We’ll list a handful of the most popular titles below, just to give you a taste of what to expect:

  • Marvel’s Spider-Man: Miles Morales
  • Gran Turismo 7
  • Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart
  • Project Athia
  • Returnal
  • Sackboy: A Big Adventure
  • Destruction AllStars
  • Oddworld Soulstorm
  • GhostWire: Tokyo
  • Hitman 3
  • NBA 2K21
  • Demon’s Souls
  • Resident Evil Village
  • Horizon Forbidden West
  • Dying Light 2
  • Godfall
  • Watch Dogs: Legion
  • Rainbow Six: Quarantine
  • Starfield
  • Elder Scrolls 6
  • Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines 2
  • Lord Of The Rings: Gollum
  • Assassin’s Creed Valhalla
  • Maquette
  • Heavenly Bodies
  • Recompile
  • Worms Rumble

We also expect titles like Cyberpunk 2077, The Witcher 4, and Uncharted 5 to launch on the PS5, but that’s just speculation at this point.

It goes without saying that plenty of new titles should be available for the console at or soon after launch. If the console lives up to its promises, we expect many of them will be some of the biggest, most beautiful video games we have ever seen.

PS5: Price and release date

PlayStation 5 logo

Last Fall, Sony said we can expect to see the PlayStation 5 officially launch during the 2020 holiday season. The company has yet to announce a specific release date. Though Sony fully revealed the console during the June 11 reveal event, the company has not provided a more accurate release date quite yet, but did reaffirm that it would launch before the end of the year.

The PlayStation 4 landed in November 2013, so we expect Sony’s next-gen console to land during a similar time-frame this year. That is, if the launch plans aren’t affected by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The PlayStation 5 has also been listed on e-commerce platforms Flipkart and Amazon in India. The teaser pages for the console on both websites mention late 2020 availability. This would be great news for Indian gamers as Sony usually launches new PlayStations in India a couple of months after the US launch. The PS4 bridged that gap to a great extent though and launched just two months after its original release date in the US. With a late 2020 timeline, it looks like the PS5 will carry on that approach and release in India around the same time as the US and Europe.

As far as price is concerned, the PS4 and PS4 Pro retailed for $399, so we expect the PS5 to surpass that price point. During an earnings call in February 2020, Spiel Times reported that Sony has yet to decide on a pricing model. As of the June 11 reveal event, we still do not have an update on pricing.

But, if we are to believe some of the leaks surrounding the topic, we can expect the console will come in at $499. Tipster @PSErebus tweeted several pieces of information about the PS5, including this rumored price point, as well as a supposed November 20 launch date.

Bloomberg later reported that Sony was struggling with the PlayStation 5’s price due to expensive components. So far, it looks like Sony’s PS5 will cost about $450 to manufacture. The original PS4 reportedly cost about $381 to build, so if Sony wants to maintain razor-thin profit margins on hardware, the PS5 will need to cost at least $470, which roughly lines up with the previously rumored price point.

Though it’s just speculation at this point, we think it is safe to assume the PS5 will most likely retail for around $500. A recent post on Reddit claims that the standard version of the console would sell for 499 euros, while the unconfirmed version with the larger hard drive would cost 599 euros.


Those are all the details we have on the PS5 so far! Be sure to bookmark this page and check back often as we will update it with new information as we get our hands on it.

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