A Chinese chip manufacturer claims that Sony and Microsoft will release new consoles in the next two years, but others are not convinced.
Although all consoles have minor updates throughout their life, especially so-called ‘slim’ versions, the PS4 Pro and Xbox One X were the first time Sony and Microsoft released more powerful consoles in the middle of a generation – and it’s never been clear whether that was a one off or not.
Although Sony ended up releasing theirs first, the concept was driven by Microsoft and the underpowered base Xbox One. This time, the Xbox Series X is already the most powerful console and yet chip manufacturer TCL Technology claims that mid-generation upgrades are going to happen again anyway.
The company announced that the consoles would be released in 2023 or 2024 but already there are questions as to whether their information is accurate.
In theory, a chip manufacturer should know well in advance if a new console is in development and in the past they have often added to rumours of new hardware, although they’ve never usually been the first to reveal them.
Nevertheless, on Wednesday the company started talking about ‘Gen 9.5’ during a company presentation that was primarily about new televisions.
As noted first by Polish website PPE, TCL Technology claims that both new consoles will be able to run games at 2160p at 60 to 120 frames per second, with options for 8K resolution.
Supposedly, the consoles will be powered by new graphic chips equivalent to the AMD Radeon RX 7700 XT GPU but already commentators are questioning whether TCL Technology really know what they’re talking about.
Normally reliable insider Jeff Grubb suggests that TCL are more interested in pushing their new TVs and seems to doubt that they have any inside knowledge about new consoles.
He, along with many others, has suggested that the PlayStation 5 (and Xbox Series X/S) will have a new version soon that uses a 6nm CPU from AMD, but that’s a relatively minor change and wouldn’t be a PS5 Pro.
Although there have been occasional rumours of a third Xbox Series console, sometimes referred to as the Xbox Series V, it’s never been clear what it is and neither Microsoft nor Sony has given any indication that mid-generation updates are planned.
Apart from anything, the obvious problem is that neither company can manufacture enough of the current consoles, due to global chip shortages, and that issue is unlikely to be fully resolved until 2024 at the earliest.
PS5 is going to get a 6nm refresh soon. Better yields and could use even less cooling. All of those gains will go into improving manufacturing and saving costs. Maybe a hardware redesign is part of that. But I don’t think there’s any chance of a Pro any time soon.
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