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PS4 Announcement LIVE: Sony Unveils Playstation 4 Release Date and Price

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Playstation 4 Release Date: New PS4 Available Nov. 15, Price is $399

Update: The Playstation 4 will be released November 15 in the U.S. (November 29 for Europe) and will cost $399.

Sony is set to reveal the Playstation 4 release date. Videogame developers will reveal details about their new systems at the Gamescon conference in Cologne, Germany, on Tuesday. Sony will announce the release date for the PlayStation 4 at a 1 pm ET press conference. Experts are guessing the release date will be set for late October — ahead of rival Microsoft's new Xbox One release. Meanwhile, Microsoft will announce the lineup of games that will release alongside the Xbox One.

The Playstation 4 will fully support used games, will have no restrictions on its games, and will always be available offline. As for price, that issue is simple: in a clear reversal from 2006 (when the more expensive PS3 compete with the less expensive Xbox 360), the Playstation 4 will cost $399, and the Xbox One will cost $499. If the next generation is only worth $400 to you, not $500, Sony has made your decision this holiday season very easy.

Sony has also taken to Twitter and revealed their first official hardware photo, pictured above. The device still maintains a decidedly "PlayStation" design, with the all-black color and the familiar controller layout, although it luckily looks quite small.

Pre-orders for the console are now being accepted by major retailers.

PS4 Release May Not Be Enough to Save Sony

Sony announced the release of the next generation of its popular PlayStation gaming console in New York City on Wednesday, an announcement coming at the same time the company's stock was recovering from its lowest stock price in 32 years.

PlayStation 4 has the hopes of all of Sony behind it as it fights for its life. Sony's failure to adopt software over hardware over the last decade has helped to compound declining TV sales, which combined have sent the company's stock plunging since 2008.

The explosion of innovation in digital technology necessitated that Sony shift its focus on what it does best. Kazuo Hirai, the current president and CEO who ascended to the helm of the company through the PlayStation division, describes the PS4, mobile gaming, and digital imaging as the three targets pursued by the company to help itself rebuild after its falling-behind to Apple and Samsung in portable music devices and televisions respectively.

The announcement of the product so far has not helped the company as the stock was still down at the close of trading on Wednesday. A lot of information was given on what the new PS4 will have, however the announcement left out key details including the price, what the new console looks like (they only showed images of the new controller), what type of media the games will be in (digital or physical), and any actual footage of gameplay to analyze how the new system works.

New product announcements typically give companies a boost, but Sony's declining stock price after the announcement is an indicator that the markets are still skeptical that Sony's newest PS has what it takes to help the company regain momentum. The purpose of the announcement seemed lost on the press but this confusion-related curiosity might be Sony's winning strategy.

Sony's best hope is that the hype around the PS4 builds between now and the launch date while it focuses on those other two areas of mobile gaming and digital imaging to help it regain its former glory. Especially with the rumored Apple TV on its way, Sony needs to reinforce its entertainment value proposition to consumers, as it once did with the PS2 which still remains the best-selling home video game console of all time to date. 

Xbox 720 and PS4: Major Game Changers

The Playstation 4 and the Xbox 720 will be industry game changers, despite what critics say. With the PS4 and XBox 720, we're witnessing the newest evolution of video games, a shift that will turn high-quality video gaming into a play-anywhere, anytime experience.  

Sony on Wednesday night — in an Apple-esque product roll-out — unveiled the PlayStation 4. Kind of. 

A two-hour-long presentation introduced us to a new controller, games in development, and some specs … but there was no sign of the actual console box. Or the price. Or a release date more specific than “holiday 2013.” 

Thursday, after pundits digested everything that Sony put on the table in the event, the PS4 was assailed by criticism.

The Wall Street Journal the said the much-hyped launch of the PS3 left important questions unanswered:

“The PlayStation franchise is now almost 20 years old and its glory days are a thing of the past. Since PlayStation 3 came on the market in late 2006, Sony's gaming division has mostly incurred big losses — a $2 billion operating loss in the year ended March 2007, a $1.2 billion operating loss the following year and a $600 million operating loss in the year to March 2009. After that, gaming was rolled into a bigger unit with most of Sony's other consumer products — a sign, probably, of PlayStation's growing irrelevance.”

Crushing.

But why does any of that matter?

Sure price is a concern. The PS4, reportedly costing in the $400+ range, seems to be cheaper than its PS3 predecessor on launch, and that is absolutely critical. The PS3 lost a lot of early momentum because of its average game library and a very high price drove some casual gamers toward the Wii and Xbox.

But PS4 — as well as the soon-to-come Xbox 720, due to be announced in March — open the doors a completely re-imagined video game industry. Release date, price, and even what the console look like play second-fiddle to what users will be able to do on the device. The PS4 will integrate a wave of new ideas and technologies, from cloud computing to mobile gaming, all of which will redesign how we use and consume major video games.

Despite all the “super-computer” hardware in the console, the PS4’s controller — dubbed "DualShock 4” —  is the first major game changer. The DualShock will have a touch pad … which, in our touch screen-oriented world, is a cute feature … but there is likely more to this development than meets the eye.

The DualShock seems to be the first step in a bigger PS4 evolution which will likely force all PS4 games to integrate with touch screen technology. The final vision, it seems, will be that PS4 games will eventually be able to be played on smart pads and smartphones ... all of which, of course, rely on touch screen technology. Say good bye to the joystick.

But the touch screen-to-smart pad evolution is missing a step … how will console-based games make it to mobile devices?

Sony has said that every PS4 game will eventually be able to be played on its hand-held gaming system, the Playstation Vita. This effectively allows console gamers to be mobile gamers.

To do this, PS4 will utilize a cloud computing system ... so far the first major gaming platform to do so (Xbox is also reportedly said to be using this feature in its future 720 model). The cloud computing will utilize Gaikai streaming technology, creating no need for discs or downloads.

Cloud computing, then, will allow Playstation to eventually stream content on other devises … imagine a Playstation App that allows you to use your PS4 console as a game mainframe and stream those games on mobile devises. Imagine playing a high-quality Killzone: Shadowfall on your train ride to work.

Angry Birds was just the beginning of mobile gaming.

About 63% of the U.S. population plays video games, while about 70% of the world plays video games. But, as the WSJ reports, console gaming in general is declining. Since PS3 first hit the shelves more than six years ago, tablets and smartphones have become the must-have technology for a new generation. Mobile devices also offer cheap or free games to satisfy non-hardcore gamers. In the U.S., console sales declined every month through 2012, according to researcher NPD Group. U.S. sales of hardware, software and accessories fell 17% in January from a year earlier. But console games like HaloSkyrimCall of Duty, and Grand Theft Auto off more compelling gameplay, graphics, and story lines then whatever new version of Tetris being pedaled at the App Store. There is a demand for high-quality games.

Sure there are faults in the PS4, but this is the foundation of a completely new gaming universe.

PS4 and the eventual Xbox 720 will push the limits of that universe.

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'Killzone: Shadowfall' — The First Epic PS4 Game

Playstation unveiled it's first big, epic game, KillZone: Shadowfall, at the Playstation 4 event on Wednesday. The gameplay video showed a first-person shooter with graphics that looked better than a PS3 or 360 game. The graphics were clearer and very flashy, but not massively dramatic. Still, the gameplay was crisp.

There were lots of little things that looked cool: lens flares, lots of water, terrific depth of field effects.

There's visible, moving confetti on the ground and each person looks distinct. Beyond just shiny stuff, the next-gen is full of little details.

Looks amazing:

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Playstation Orbis Games: PS4 to Include 'Final Fantasy XIII' and 'Star Wars 1313'

According to reports, here's what we can expect from the new Playstation 4 "Orbis."

Specs

VGLeaks posted documents which suggest an eight-core processor based on AMD’s Jaguar chip; a GPU based on AMD’s R10XX architecture, which supports DirectX 11.1 and above; 4GB of RAM and of course, being Sony, a Blu-ray drive which will support up to 50GB discs. Thats some serious computing power.

Price

Sony has a history of never pinning themselves down on price until the launch. It could be anything - but $400 seems like the range for this new gizmo.

Games

‘What does our future hold for tomorrow?’ tweeted Sony Santa Monica, the studio behind the God of War games. ‘We heard they may open Pandora’s Box (again) live on stage.’

So what do we know? Well the above has kick-started a rumour that God of War 4 is in development for the launch period. Here are some other reported titles for PS4:

- Destiny

- Killzone 4

- LittleBigPlanet 3

- Motorstorm

Other bets include Star Wars 1313, Ubisoft’s Watch Dogs, Uncharted 4. The Last Guardian and Final Fantasy Versus XIII are reportedly going to be exclusive to the PS4. A number of big developers who have recenlty flown under the radar when it comes to new games likely signed a non-disclosure agreement because of the PS4.

 

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PS4 Gaikai: Playstation Uses Cloud Gaming Technology

During its PlayStation 4 announcement on Wednesday, Sony revealed that users will be able play downloadable games before they are finished downloading, which is cool.

PS4 can also download games in the background, even with the power off. 

The next is immediacy — the system has a low-power state and auto saves games. You just hit the power button and start playing again.

"The next design task was the larger experience." Five key goals, the first is simplicity.

PS4 will utilize a cloud computing system ... so far the first major gaming platform to do so. The cloud computing will utilize Gaikai streaming technology. 

Gaikai was a tiny, optimistic company throwing everything at the wall, desperate to find a use for its cloud gaming technology. Today, those dreams have been fulfilled: Gaikai's David Perry walked out on stage at Sony's PlayStation 4 event, confirming that the new PlayStation 4 will use that tech to stream games over the internet, with no need for discs or downloads.

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PS4 Orbis DualShock 4 Controller Will Have a Touch Pad and FB Share Button

A number of Playstation 4 rumors have circulated ahead of Sony's Wednesday event, in which the successor to the 5-year-old PS3 will likely be announced. Sony has been extremely tight-lipped about the new console, reportedly codenamed "Orbis." Sony made the announcement about tonight's media event with a brief invitation to journalists on Jan. 31, inviting them to "see the future."

There's a touchpad up top in the middle, a "share" button and a headphone jack, and a "light bar" as a "simpler, more friendly way to identify players," says Tim Stevens, a lead developer for the controller.

There will be a new controller, though, and it seems to rethink the standard video game console controller (Remember when Nintendo came out with that three-horned N64 controller and everyone freaked out? The same will likely happen with the "Orbis"). The PS4 is reported to have a new controller, complete with touchpad. It should be about the same size as the current DualShock PlayStation controller. It will also have a share button, ecause…social. But, seriously, this is sort of cool. The idea is to seamlessly share screenshots during gameplay.

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PS4 Released: New Playstation Will Be a "Significant Shift" in Gaming

Andrew House, CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment and the head of Playstation, introduced the Playstation 4 at a Sony event on Wednesday night.

"We believe that PlayStation 4 represents a significant shift from thinking of PlayStation as merely a box or console," House said.

"PlayStation 4 will unleash imaginations... while also allowing developers to explore new business models." He's talking about episodic gameplay, even free to play games.

"We must give gamers the kind of multi-dimensional experiences they not only expect, but quite frankly deserve."

Welcome to the next evolution of gaming.

Here are some specs regarding the new PS4: 

1. A New Controller: According to Edge, The PS4 is has a new controller, complete with touchpad. It should be about the same size as the current DualShock PlayStation controller.

2. It Will Have a "Share" Button: The idea is to seamlessly share screenshots during gameplay ... the PS4 will weave social media with gaming ... an evolution of social gaming.

3. Released in Time to Compete With Xbox: The idea is to go head to head against Microsoft's Xbox at the end of the year, during the holiday season.

4. Specs: A customized chip based on AMD's A8-3850 with a quad-core 2.9GHz processor and a 1GHz graphics card with 1GB of dedicated memory.

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Sony Announcement Opens With "We Built the Most

Andrew House opens the event. He is essentially the head of PlayStation worldwide. He's kind of a big deal.

He says: "Today, we'll show you how we're strengthening the PlayStation ecosystem through hardware and software... that, when combined, create truly magical experiences."

"Today, we'll show you how we're strengthening the PlayStation ecosystem through hardware and software... that, when combined, create truly magical experiences."

"Connectivtiy between devices and the ease with which they connect is essential for the core gamer."

He ends his introduction "... The demands for a new platform were clear." 

Here comes the PS4.

Where to Watch Sony PS4 Announcement LIVE Online

Sony is holding a special PlayStation event in New York City on Wednesday. So far, the company has been tight-lipped on what it will announce, but just about every rumor has suggested a new PlayStation will be unveiled.

Sony has confirmed that its upcoming PlayStation Meeting 2013, the conference where it's expected to reveal the next-generation PlayStation 4, will be streamed in a variety of places, including online and on the PS3. The live stream will be in HD in order to give fans a chance to check out the new merchandise.

The live stream will kick off at 6 p.m. EST/3 p.m. PST, February 20.

The live stream can be found here.

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PS4 Announcement LIVE: Sony Unveils Playstation 4 Release Date and Price

In a shocker, Sony is expected to unveil its next PlayStation console on Wednesday, hoping to breath fresh life into a videogame business that has been racked by slowing sales and growing questions about the future of dedicated home consoles.

The new console — what many have already dubbed the PlayStation 4 — is not expected to go on sale until sometime this fall. It would be the first console in seven years that playstation has released.

The unveiling proves that the Japanese company is determined to beat rival Microsoft, parent of the Xbox console, to the punch when it comes to new merchandise.

The Wednesday Playstation announcement will likely set off a console wars between the two companies, as each vies for new fans via their Playstation 4 and Xbox 720.

The announcement was hinted at for March. According to the February 2013 issue of Game Informer (via Videogamer), both Microsoft and Sony are readying "special Apple-style press conferences" to officially unveil their next-generation consoles. These conferences, according to the report, will be near the Game Developers Conference, which takes place in San Francisco from March 25 to 29.

Although the report contends that the year’s biggest gaming event is still the Electronic Entertainment Expo, confirmed for later this June in Los Angeles, is still states, “both companies want to give their systems their own limelight.” For that reason, the conferences will be separate from the San Diego event, which will instead focus on next-gen software “in preparation for the systems' release at the end of the year.”

Interestingly, the report also asserts that Sony will likely make its release announcement prior to Microsoft, claiming that the Japanese company “is determined not to come out last this time like the PlayStation 3 did this generation.” Fans will remember that the PlayStation 2 dominated the console market but, because Sony delayed the release of the PS3, they are behind Microsoft this current generation in terms of console sales.

Since PS3, Sony has sold about 77 million units of the console globally but has watched its lucrative game business come under heavy challenge from Microsoft’s Xbox, as well as seismic changes in the overall industry as smartphones and tablet have become powerful game platforms in their own right — with games themselves frequently sold for $1 or even given away (i.e. Angry Birds).

That has put pressure on Sony as well as its peers to convince gamers to continue to pay premium prices for high-definition, immersive game experiences. The companies are also working to put their consoles front-and-center in the home as entertainment hubs — and as possible replacements for the set-top boxes that cable companies distribute as part of their services.

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