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Forums - Sony Discussion - Is a PlayStation Hybrid Console possible, or even probable?

Minus the billions of dollars that the PS3 hemorrhaged, PlayStation home consoles have been a resounding success. The PlayStation Portable was quite an experiment in the mid-2000s to challenge Nintendo. But the hardware and software sold were most impressive. However, I'm pretty sure the PSP was a net loss for Sony, since the hardware was so pricy. And then the PlayStation Vita happened. Sony never put their heart into it. It only ending up selling more than Nintendo's failed Wii U because of the passion of the player base and third party studios. Sony has said in recent years that they have no plans to make another dedicated handheld, and it makes business sense. 

Now Nintendo has helped shake up gaming with the Nintendo Switch. Now both Nintendo's handheld and home console divisions have been unified. Nintendo hopefully continues with hybrids for as long as they make platforms.

I'll be frank, Sony has certainly taken some ideas from Nintendo over the years. In addition to still making home consoles, do you think Sony would make a hybrid?

There's a lot of potential for some great first and third-party titles. Also, imagine PS Now and classic PlayStation titles (PS1, PS2, PSP, PS Vita, PS4) in a hybrid platform as well. If Sony launched a hybrid this year (hypothetical, not happening), it could have the specs of a PS4. Maybe even a PS4 Pro if they really wanted to engineer that and find a way to cool it and have a long enough battery life. But that would probably be very pricey and difficult by 2021 standards.

Is this even probable? And would you even want to see it?

Lifetime Sales Predictions 

Switch: 125 million (was 73, then 96, then 113 million)

PS5: 105 million Xbox Series S/X: 60 million

PS4: 122 mil (was 100 then 130 million) Xbox One: 50 mil (was 50 then 55 mil)

3DS: 75.5 mil (was 73, then 77 million)

"Let go your earthly tether, enter the void, empty and become wind." - Guru Laghima

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Is it possible? Sure, anything is possible. Is it probable? No. Do I want to see it? No.

Like a wise man once said:

"Is it possible? Sure, anything is possible. Is it probable? No. Do I want to see it? No."

Probably not. There isn't really a market for one.

If we go by sales.. the PSP did okay in the first few years (particularly in Japan) but its interest waned to the DS and 3DS. PSVita was DOA.

I doubt Sony will put any money into another portable.

Like one brilliant physicist once quoted:

"Like a wise man once said:

"Is it possible? Sure, anything is possible. Is it probable? No. Do I want to see it? No.""

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Sony doesn't really have the lineup for it. The Switch is getting the third party support it is, which isn't amazing by any stretch, because the system is selling well. The system is selling well largely because of Nintendo's first party lineup.

I'm not arguing Sony doesn't have good first party games, but they don't have stuff on the level of Mario Kart 8, Pokemon, or Animal Crossing. Not enough that would really be able to sustain a platform.

And even if we theoretically say that they can get a hybrid SKU of the PS5 that will have all of the same games (with a drop in quality to PS4ish levels), then how much is that helping them? How many people are going to buy this that would not have bought a PS5 instead? Maybe some will buy it as a supplemental system to play their PS5 games on the go, but unless Sony is making a profit on the hardware itself, what's the point for them?

It's definitely technologically possible, but I don't see a market for it.

Possible? Sure. Sony could probably make a Switch-sized PS4 portable in the next few years that runs the same games, and also has some cross-compatibility with PS5 via PS4 versions of those games.

But probable? Probably not. It’d be a risk, and Vita didn’t do great, and Switch kinda already has the market cornered. At best, it’d be niche hardware, and I’m not sure Sony would want to waste resources on it.

Thinking out loud here... since Series S and X play the same games, and S is relatively small and cheap, might it be possible to have another system in a family like that, in say four to five years time, that is roughly Switch size, costs maybe $400, and plays the same games? If its possible for MS it should be possible for Sony.

In any case, I'd still bet against it happening, and I have no interest in it.

Making a dockable version of a base PS4 is well within their ability. But why would they bother trying that? They are the leading home console, and any handheld effords on their part with meet them with probably a worse situation than the Vita faced.

You know it deserves the GOTY.

Come join The 2018 Obscure Game Monthly Review Thread.

COULD it have the specs of the PS4?

Kind of. It depends on how big they would make it and how expensive. The Lenovo LaVie is running an i7 and Intel Xe which far surpasses the PS4. It would not be likely that they would make it a laptop style like that though, and it would be a form factor more similar to the Switch. Since Sony is a phone manufacturer as well they would probably go with Qualcomm and use the Adreno line. Which the best Adreno GPU out there does about 2.1 TFLOPS...which isn't everything but at least puts a number to it. The Adreno 680 hits 1.84TFLOPS which is exactly what the PS4 APU does. This being said...these parts are VERY expensive and requires significantly more power than the Switch. Which means they'd need a larger battery, etc.

Now, a portable console that PLAYS PS4 games natively...that is impossible. The die can only be shrunk so much, unless they go with emulation...which has it's own host of problems.