Sony is pushing through with the reported Feb 20 preview of the new PlayStation 4 in New York, with a new report indicating that the refreshed gaming console will carry a price tag of just over $US400.
According to Japanese publication Asahi Shimbun, the new PS4 will be released this year for Y40,000 per unit for the base model or roughly $US428, which is more expensive when compared to the cheapest PS3 model in the United States.
At present, the most basic PS3 configuration retails at around $US269 in America, per the figures provided by The Verge.
The Japanese report did not mention the specific date for the commercial availability of the new console though it was strongly hinted that the PS4 will definitely debut in two markets this year, the U.S. and Japan.
The European version of the new Sony gaming machine will likely come out by early 2014, The Verge said.
No hardware specs were also mentioned in the Asahi report save for the possible modification in the new PS4 controller, which likely will take after the Wii U GamePad adjustments that added touch control and other functions to the Nintendo console.
In PS4's case, Sony reportedly retained the basic make up of the DualShock 3 controller while providing touch control flavours.
It is also believed that the new PS4 will offer online access, mainly for social networking functions, which will be made easier by the re-engineered game controller. Nintendo repackaged the Wii U as a gadget that is able to deliver full family entertainment functions. Sony, analysts said, could be following suit.
Notwithstanding the revamp, the Wii U was greeted minus the enthusiasm first seen with its predecessor. Sales were reportedly below expectations, prompting Nintendo to downgrade its earlier guidance for the Wii U.
The gaming console industry is already dealing with softening demands as gamers started shifting their attention to mobile devices, due largely to the increasing dominance of smartphones and tablet computers.
Analysts are not too upbeat but it remains to be seen if the entry of the new PS4 or the X-Box 720 from Microsoft after it will reverse the declining fortunes of the sector.