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I think OP is right about the need to hype new tech for the average consumer. The moms and dads who don't follow the evolution of consoles very closely need to be reeled in with some simple sound bites, like talking about 8K instead of 4K and so on, in order to signify that things are moving forward and this is why you should buy the new thing.
The other thing is that while consoles do get more powerful, the demands keep growing as well. Devs come up with new engines and graphical advancements and effects and whatnot, and those will quickly gobble down some of the gains that new hardware offers.