The PlayStation 4 ,a complete entertainment center, landed just in time for the biggest shopping days of the year.

Cover Photo

Andrew House, president and Group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, speaks during the unveiling of the PlayStation 4. 

ps4 main pic

President and Group CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, Andrew House, reveals the new PlayStation logo.Mark Cerny, the lead system architect for the new PS4 spoke extensively about Sony's new hardware and the company's buzzword-laden goal of creating “a dynamic preference driven path through the world of content”.Cerny unveiled the new Dual Shock 4 controller which will feature a touchpad "as a new form of input", a headphone jack and a dedicated Share button "to enhance social interactions".

Sony didn't feel like showing off the PlayStation 4 in its physical form, but we saw plenty of tech demos, game teasers, and developers talking about how much they can't wait to develop for Sony's new console. When the lights began to dim on the event, the company did have one more vague bit of info to reveal in the form of a launch window: Holiday 2013.

Launching a console during the holidays is hardly a surprising move, and with the current console generation beginning to grow a bit long in the tooth, the waning months of 2013 seem like a logical time for both Sony and Microsoft to toss their hats into the next-gen ring once more.

In short, this is a time of greater and faster change than at any other time in the history of the industry, short of the total collapse in the early '80s.All of this means that a new video game console has to do more than just look prettier to represent a significant enough advancement to convince gamers to pony up for a new machine. So how does PlayStation 4 meet the challenge?

"Simple" refers to the PS4 architecture, and one assumes is a direct response to the architecture of the PS3, which was widely criticized for being overly complex.As Sony's demonstration video explained, "simple" means "elegant," and with elegant hardware you can achieve "astonishing complexity." Whatever that means.

The Controller

The DualShock 4 controller

The DualShock 4 appears to be a hybrid of the PS3 DualShock 3 controller, the PlayStation Move controller and the touch-sensitive pad on back of the Vita.The DualShock 4 features enhanced rumble, improved latency, a touchpad, the all-important share button (more on this later), a headphone jack and a lightbar for Move-style motion control.


Social is where things get interesting for the PS4. The "share" button on the DualShock 4 controller is essentially a door to connectivity and sharing. Sony will be partnering with "key third party devices and services" like Facebook and Ustream to provide a raft of options for sharing and sociality.

Pressing the "share" button while playing a game will allow players to capture video and broadcast it to friends. Hit the share button, scan the last few minutes of gameplay, tag it and return to play. Video will upload as you continue to play.

Using the PlayStation Network, gamers will be able to browse live game video of what friends are doing at that exact moment, and the network will be designed around "real world friends."

Perry called it "the first social gaming network with meaning."

Using Remote Play, gamers can pause a game, transfer it from the PS4 to the Vita, then resume playing from precisely where they left off. Then do the same in reverse. In theory, this will allow long, immersive play experiences to be shared across both devices, on the go."Our long term goal is to make every PS4 title playable on the Vita," said Perry. the PS4 will not play PS3 games out of the box

What Sony revealed this week, however, suggests a goal for the PS4 is to have it observe and learn about a gamer's preferences and provide updates and downloaded content in advance.This system is very much aware of the player and what is going on in the room," announced a demonstration video.The PS4 will also serve as an entertainment center, as many would expect.The PlayStation Network will also allow for download of movies.