Sony is skipping E3 this year, but the company is still offering up some new details about the PlayStation 5: it’ll come with an SSD by default, instead of a slower HDD like the PS4; it’ll support 4K graphics at a 120Hz refresh rate, for a much smoother look on displays that can handle the faster speed; and game saves will in some way be able to transfer between console generations, so you can pick up where you left off when you start playing a game again on the new console.
The new details were reported by CNET, which spoke with Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO Jim Ryan. Ryan also said that Sony plans to take the PlayStation Now game streaming service “to the next level later this year.” Though he didn’t expand on what that meant, Sony did just sign a deal to work with Microsoft on game streaming tech, seemingly to help the two console makers compete against newcomers to the field, like Google.
Some of these features are designed to make the transition between console generations easier. It’s not clear exactly how you’ll be able to pick up a game on a new console and continue playing — Ryan suggests it could be because you’re streaming the game on PlayStation Now, or because the PS5 is backward compatible with PS4 games — but the point is to clear the hurdles to early adoption.
“When everything is networked and everybody is connected and everybody is friends, the opportunity — with backwards compatibility — to migrate that community in a more efficient manner I think is massively more attractive for gamers and for us than at any point in the past,” Ryan told the Financial Times.
Sony’s PlayStation 5 is expected to arrive next year. Sony hasn’t made any formal announcements about the console yet, but it has revealed a handful of specs and details in interviews executives have done in the lead-up to E3. So far, we know the PS5 will support 8K graphics and run off of an eight-core CPU based on AMD’s Ryzen chips, with a GPU based on AMD’s Radeon hardware. It’ll support ray tracing, and there’ll be a chip for “3D audio.”