Sony confirms details of new "high-end PS4" - but it won't be launching at E3

Earlier this year, it emerged that Sony has been working on an upgraded version of its PlayStation 4. Nicknamed the 'PS4.5', it was later revealed that the new console is being developed under the codename 'Neo', and that it will offer a considerable performance boost over the current model.

Today, Sony officially revealed details about the upgraded console - but also confirmed that it won't be making an appearance at next week's E3 gaming expo.

The current PlayStation 4, shown here, will remain on sale alongside the new model

Speaking with the Financial Times, Andrew House, president and chief executive of Sony Interactive Entertainment, confirmed that the new "high-end PS4" will be more expensive than the current version, which is priced around $349.

Significantly, he also said that the new model won't replace the existing one. "It is intended to sit alongside and complement the standard PS4," he said. "We will be selling both through the life cycle."

Acknowledging the Neo codename, House said that the upcoming console is aimed at 'hardcore' gamers, as well as other consumers looking for a device that supports Ultra HD / 4K-resolution content.

Both versions of the PS4 will support its virtual reality headset, but it seems that not every game will necessarily support both versions of the console. "All games will support the standard PS4," House said, "and we anticipate all or a very large majority of games will also support the high-end PS4". He added that a "small but manageable" amount of additional work will be required for developers to ensure compatibility between the standard PS4 and the Neo.

However, while many had expected Sony to officially unveil the Neo at E3 next week, House revealed that an announcement there is not on the cards. He offered no indication of exactly when the console will make its debut, saying: "We want to ensure we have a full range of the best experiences on the new system that we can showcase in their entirety."

Sony's decision to share these details less than a week before E3 - and the news that the new console won't be making an appearance there - will no doubt come as quite a surprise to many. Interestingly, it follows recent reports claiming that Microsoft had decided to bring forward its plans to reveal a more powerful version of its Xbox console at E3, codename 'Scorpio', as it was said to be "feeling pressure" to make an announcement alongside Sony's new console.

It remains to be seen if Microsoft's plans for E3 will now change again as a result of today's revelations from Sony. Microsoft is still expected to unveil a slimmer version of the current Xbox One there, which is likely to go on sale later this summer.

Source: Financial Times (requires subscription)

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