PlayStation 4 Likely to Launch on Feb 20: What to Expect from the New Sony Game Console

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By Erik Pineda | February 1, 2013 2:56 PM EST

Sony sent out invites for a New York City event labelled 'PlayStation Meeting 2013' which the ailing Japanese consumer electronic firm will stage on Feb. 20. Is this the much-awaited PlayStation 4 unveiling?

The game console industry is not exactly in the best of health despite the recent Wii U debut from Nintendo, which registered global sales figures paling in comparison with the original Wii.

Last we heard, Nintendo pulled down its initial sales guidance for the console that experts regard as the likely indicator if the industry will ever recover from the might onslaught by the gaming industry, in which the preferred devices are smartphones and tablets.

Will the new PS4 provide the solution this time? What can we expect from the new iteration?

Hardware specs

The PlayStation gained fame and success by providing top-notch gaming experience to hardcore gamers, made possible, of course, by high-end CPU and GPU deployed with the machine.

For the PS4, Sony will use the 8-core AMD Bulldozer processor that will work with a generous RAM provision of up to 8GB, according to Kotaku. That should give enough firepower for the console to please even the most demanding members of the global gaming community.

To deliver maximum visual delight, the new PS4 is likely to features GPU belonging to AMD's Radeon HD 7000 series line that hums at speed of 800MHz. Per reports by Digital Foundry, the upcoming Sony console will show off 18 Graphics Core Next compute units.

First units to hit store shelves are said to carry HDD capacity of 160GB but this should be upgraded come launch time considering the prevalence of downloadable game titles.

There were reports too that Sony might the bandwagon and make the PS4 exclusively for downloads but according to The Wall Street Journal, the company "considered ... and ultimately rejected a download-only plan for its next videogame console."

So complementing the PS4's internal storage is a BluRay disc drive. Each unit will also have USB 3.0 ports, Ethernet and HDMI connectivity options.

Other components

One of the more popular parts of the whole PS3 package is the DualShock game controller. Talks were ripe that Sony is mulling on radical revisions for the PS4 controls to follow the Wii U GamePad model. This indicates that the next DualShock will sport an LCD display that will extend its functions, probably to increase the console's entertainment value.

Those deep into Sony's gaming world would want to see a close integration between the PS Vita and the PS4, which according to GizMag.com will likely be realised in the new version of the console.

Launch date and other concerns

As mentioned above, the upcoming Sony event on Feb 20 could very well see the unwrapping of the PS4 but its actual availability remains a mystery. However, it is almost certain that many questions will get answers on that day.

Gamers would want to get details on the various PS4 configurations and what exactly are the cash setbacks for each model. As Nintendo packed its Wii U with other amusement values outside of the gaming sphere, it is also of great interest to learn if Sony will port other services with the console in order to woo more buyers.

It is also expected that PS3 game titles are backward compatible with the PS4 but gamers would appreciate if Sony confirm this plus announce the availability of new games for the console to gain enough traction.

Lastly, gamers would like to know if Sony intends to retain the PlayStation 4 or PS4 labels of its game console or push it out with a different name. GizMag.com notes on its report that the product assumed the development stage name Orbis. It is a wonder for many if the name will stick.

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