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Daily Reaction: The Ultimate Sony E3 2013 Breakdown – Every Possible Announcement, Rumor and Prediction

June 7, 2013 Written by Dan Oravasaari

ps4e3

Console Overview: Hardware, price, features and more

Dan: This is the one thing besides games that people are going to be the most excited about: The PS4 itself. We will finally get to see what the console looks like as well as get details on pricing, DRM, Gaikai, Remote Play, PS Plus and much, much more.

The price of the PS4 will depend mostly on if the PS4eye will be bundled with the console, much like the Kinect 2 is with the Xbox One. More than likely, I expect a release of 2 SKUs, one at $399 and another at $450, with the difference being something like HDD space, the inclusion of the camera or some obscure ability like baking bread.

On top of the price, we will finally get a release date which should fall around Oct/Nov of this year in the US, EU and Japan. Sony should also make sure to specify if they will be installing any DRM to block used games, but without an always online presence for the PS4 I don’t see how they could manage this in the same manner as Microsoft. This also means that Sony will definitely detail more of the specs of the PS4, giving us a better understanding of how the system operates and just how it will compare next to the Xbox One.

Sony will also have to address how they are changing their online network, as they have been operating at a loss with PSN as a free service. We need to find out if that is going to continue as we move into the next-generation. PlayStation Plus has been a success for the most part, but still has not reached a level of saturation to compete with XBL. Also, moving forward with the PS4, there is an issue with PS+’s monthly free games, as there just will not enough of a catalog to support the service as we know it – so that will have to change.

Seb: Yeah, the fact that PS+ won’t have any games to use is going to be a problem. The Vita is currently facing this issue, but they at least have PSP games to fill it out, which the non-backwards compatible PS4 can’t do with PS3 games. I don’t think that Sony will charge for normal online usage a la XBL, but if they do, I bet they’ll bundle in PS+ as a complementary service.

The other big online service is, of course, Gaikai/PlayStation Cloud and, depending on whether they have hit any hurdles, we should find out when they plan to roll it out. With job listings showing Gaikai coming to mobiles and tablets, it’ll be interesting to hear whether we’ll even need to buy a PS4 to play PS4 games.

Connectivity between the PS4 and ‘second screens’ will likely be a big part of the conversation. We’ll get a much closer look at the social vision Sony has with the PS4, which thankfully isn’t always online. Included in this will be more news on their share button, that posts to Ustream or Facebook. I wouldn’t be surprised if Twitch joined in on the action too and was revealed at the show. As for DRM, unfortunately I think there will be some restrictions, but they will be closer to the existing online-passes than anything as severe as what the Xbox One does.

With the price, I think that Sony are very conscious of just how much the PS3’s ludicrous cost both killed its sales and their bottom line, so the PC-like PS4 will be considerably more affordable. I agree that there’ll be multiple SKUs, but I predict at $349.99 and $399.99. Talking release dates, I think it’ll be out on November 5th in the US and Europe/Australia and March 2014 in Japan.

As for what it’ll look like – it’ll be a black rectangle.

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