The thing to remember is this ~ while a $599 premium console in 2020 would be juicy, it will still take a lot of VRAM to pull off what many people are looking forward to. I was just explaining this to the mod team.
GDDR5 ram is pretty much impossible. That will ensure a bandwidth bottleneck right out the gate.
16GB of GDDR6 with a 256bit bus is actually the easiest and most straight forward thing they could do with regards to RAM upgrades. And will cost about 30% more than it cost sony today for 8GB of GDDR5. But I think thats the minimum to expect. I expect the consoles will have 24GB of RAM. The ease to implement and overall benefits are just too great to ignore. Mind you this will be going with a set-up similar to what the XB1X had in 2017 but with GDDR6 as oppsed to GDDR5.
There is no way they are putting in a 4TB 2.5" HDD that would probably cost them around $50 at OEM pricing. If they are going to spend that much then they will go with a 1TB SSD instead Again the benefits of having every console having an SSD and what that means for devs are to much too ignore. Especially when you consider they will be lading 16GB worth of assets this time around versus 5GB. Besides, having support for external drives on day one will be a given.
And this premium launch console thing...... I think people are going to be surprised.
In my own personal opinion, I don't think they can.... Only way MS makes a "premium" console is if sony makes a $400 console. What i think will happen is that sony will make a $550 to $600 that they will sell for $499. This doesn't give MS a lot of room to do much better so MS will match it the best way it can. Think of these as the 4k consoles.
Now the difference is that MS will also make a cheaper console. With the same CPU but much weaker GPU and about 25% less RAM. Call this the 1080p console and that console will be at least $100 cheaper. Funny thing is it could even do this while using the same APU designed for the $500 SKU. But the thing is...... so could sony.