The PS5 may still be fairly early on in its life cycle, but that’s not stopping gaming industry insiders and gamers alike from speculating about the PS6. What kind of specs will it have? Will the storage be expanded? What sort of games can we expect from the console? Of course, all of these questions are unanswered right now; after all, the PS6 hasn’t been announced, and it’s likely we’ll get some sort of iteration on the PS5 before we even hear about Sony’s next console. However, that shouldn’t stop us from thinking about what the PlayStation 6 might look like or when it might arrive. Here’s our rundown on what you might be able to expect from the PS6!
Ray tracing comes to the fore
Right now, the PS5 is capable of ray tracing, but it’s a tricky sell. Most games can’t quite manage ray tracing, 4K resolution, and 60fps at the same time; you usually need to make some kind of concession in order to ensure all of those things are possible. The PS6 will likely make another technological leap forward and will be capable of ray tracing simultaneously alongside high resolution and framerate gaming. The next generation of Nvidia cards will be the ones to truly embrace ray tracing on PC, so expect the PS6 to take after that lead.
The biggest complaint that many gamers leverage against the PS5 is that it doesn’t have enough storage space. The console’s 825GB of internal SSD space is rather odd, too; it doesn’t feel like a round number, especially given that Microsoft’s Xbox Series X has 1TB. We’d expect that as game file sizes continue to balloon, Sony will respond in kind and increase the internal storage of the PS6. At the very least, we’re hoping that the external storage options become a little more affordable and accessible in the age of the PlayStation 6.
Launching in 2026 or 2027
Roughly speaking – although there are, of course, outliers – consoles tend to span around six or seven years per generation. The PS5 was released in November 2020, which means that it’s two years old this year (doesn’t time fly!?). As such, we should probably expect the PS6 to arrive sometime in 2026 or 2027. However, there’s one crucial factor limiting that possibility, and that’s the chip shortage. Unfortunately, Sony is still having trouble manufacturing PS5 consoles to keep up with demand, so it could be a very long time indeed until PS5s are readily available on the market. As such, the PS6 could be even further away than it usually would be.
Form factor and size
Another of the biggest criticisms leveraged against the PS5 is its form factor; it’s an ungainly, unwieldy-looking console, and even if you love the odd space-age design, it’s certainly divisive. Sony could go one of two ways on the PS6 design. The company could either stick with the controversial approach or design something more in line with the rest of the industry. There’s something to be said for the PS5 as a talking point, so we could definitely see Sony trying to break the mould, but it’s also true that some gamers may have been put off by the PS5’s weird shape. The console is also absolutely huge, so we’d expect the PS6 to potentially be a little smaller.
Virtual reality will be a big deal
Thanks to headsets like the Valve Index and the original PlayStation VR, virtual reality is becoming more and more viable in a commercial sense. With the PSVR 2 just around the corner, we’re expecting the PS6 to centralise VR as part of its strategy. The PSVR set is already compatible with the PS5, despite being released during the PS4’s lifetime, and we can expect the same thing to happen with the PSVR 2 headset as well. Look forward to playing many of your favourite games and franchises in VR, because Sony has made it clear that it wants this element of gaming to be a huge part of its approach going forward.
If there’s one element of the PS5 that many analysts and gamers have pointed to and described as almost undeniably “next-gen”, it’s the DualSense controller. Thanks to the haptic feedback of its triggers and the vibrational motors contained within the unit, the DualSense enhances gaming on the PS5 and makes it feel that much more immersive. We’re expecting the PS6 controller to iterate on this rather than to completely reinvent it. The DualShock 4 controller was essentially a revision of the DualShock 3 (albeit with a massive touchpad in the middle), so expect to see the DualSense 2, or DualShock 6, continue this design trend.
This is perhaps the most unknown element of what the PS6 will bring. It’s simply not possible to know what the next major gaming hit will be in five or six years’ time; although the industry seems to be moving more towards a service model for its biggest and most popular games right now, the games that are currently popular may not remain popular into the PS6 era. We should, however, expect ports of all the major tentpole games of this generation; expect PS6 versions of Grand Theft Auto VI, for example, and of The Last of Us: Part III, whenever that game is released.
Naturally, the PS6 is far enough away that it’s impossible to make predictions about it with any degree of certainty or accuracy. Sony could simply surprise everyone and make the console completely different to what people are expecting, after all. However, we think the predictions we’ve outlined above have enough evidence behind them to make them pretty credible. What do you think the PS6 will look like?