Chief financial officer of Advanced Micro Devices said that the next generation game consoles from companies like Microsoft Corp., Nintendo and Sony Corp. may emerge on the market sooner than we might think. The life-cycle of the currently available systems may be shorter than those of Sony’s PlayStation 3, Microsoft’s Xbox 360 or Nintendo’s Wii.
“The life cycle of the products are probably going to be shorter,” Devinder Kumar, the CFO of AMD, at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Technology Conference. “Our customers are already thinking about what comes next.”
It is not a secret that developers of game consoles start to work on their next systems as soon as the current generation hits the market. While the companies do not necessarily start development of new hardware ten years ahead of introduction, they start to research and make predictions about the next generation of games.
While the new PlayStation 4 and the Xbox One are dramatically more powerful than their predecessors, sometimes even their horsepower is not enough to render all video games in 1920*1080 resolution. Obviously, the consoles also will not be able to process games in 3840*2160 ultra-high-definition resolution, something that will be an important feature several years from now.
The executive from AMD did not reveal anything about the successors of the PS4 and the XB1, but clearly indicated that they may arrive earlier than ten years from now. He also confirmed that companies like Sony or Microsoft help to fund development of console processors.
“These are long life cycle products and, as you know, in the semi-custom space, you start with – three years before you introduce a product, a decision is made to use a particular company, in this case it was AMD,” said Mr. Kumar. “Then you go ahead and co-develop the product with the funding dollars frankly, mostly coming from our customers.”
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KitGuru Says: It is impossible to say when Microsoft and Sony release their next-generation game consoles. The currently available systems are pretty similar in terms of performance, so they should have similar life-cycles as well. Meanwhile, Nintendo’s Wii U is considerably behind the PS4 and the XB1, so Nintendo may try to develop a new machine and release it rather sooner than later…