Next PlayStation incoming, called PlayStation 4

At today’s PlayStation Meeting in New York, City, Sony surprised absolutely nobody with the Big Reveal of the PlayStation 4 console. Codenamed Orbis, it seems the real name for the upcoming game device is – wait for it, PlayStation 4.

Andrew House, president and Group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment took the stage, discussing the future of PlayStation Vita and smartphone gaming. This is obviously not the focus for today, but it’s still big enough and important enough to mention – expect more later in the year.

Every facet of PlayStation will become more powerful.

PlayStation Meeting

PlayStation 4

While House arguably lost some attention talking about alternative products, he certainly grabbed it all back again with one statement:

Today, we will give you an insight into the future of play.

That insight is, of course, the officially-revealed PlayStation 4. House explains that the device has been designed to provide a more personalised experience than we have ever seen, on the most powerful platform ever. The console will be simple, adaptive, socially accessible, and you’ll be able to stay informed, even when you’re away from the machine in your living room.

…and then, the words we’d all been waiting for: PlayStation 4.

The DualShock 4 for PS4

The DualShock 4 for PS4

Mark Cerny, the games industry veteran who created Marble Madness back in 1984, took to the stage to introduce a few details of the new hardware. While we still haven’t been shown the console itself, we’ve had a good look at the new controller – the DualShock 4. It is indeed the image that we had seen leaked last week, complete with concave joysticks and that mysterious touch screen in the top.

This time around, you get a “much tighter sense of control,” says Cerny, explaining there is also enhanced rumble and reduced latency. Even more exciting? A share button (to be detailed later), and a headphone jack straight into the controller.

There’s also that coloured light bar at the back – this is both a “simpler, more intuitive way” to identify players, but it’s also – as predicted – used as a Move controller, in a move some are describing as a blend of Move and Kinect.

David Perry from Sony-owned Gaikai spoke about the oft-rumoured backwards-compatibility streaming function – “Everything Everywhere” – but has announced that the ability will be rolled out in phases, and not necessarily available at launch. In the meantime, PlayStation 3 games will not be natively supported on the PlayStation 4, so don’t sell your old game system just yet.

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