Sony will be unveiling not one but two new PlayStation 4 consoles at the upcoming PlayStation event on September 7th. While it has been long expected that Sony would unveil an upgraded PlayStation 4, codenamed Neo and colloquially referred to as the 4K, the Wall Street Journal is reporting that Sony will be launching a previously unannounced smaller version of the PS4 at the same event.
The PS4 Slim is expected to replace the original model of PlayStation 4 in the Sony console lineup. Push Square has photos from someone with a boxed PS4 Slim console from Europe. The shape is roughly the same as the current PS4 based on photographs of the Slim in the wild. The Slim will have roughly the same width and depth but looks quite shorter than the current PS4.
The price of the PS4 Slim is expected to be less than the current $350 USD price tag for the PlayStation 4. The Xbox One S, Microsoft’s slim console, is priced at $300 for a console with a 500 GB hard drive. It would be entirely expected for Sony to match the One S with the PS4 Slim’s price.
Given that there are completed PS4 Slims that have been acquired in the wild, it’s believed that the Slim is ready to be shipped and we could be weeks away from the console hitting store shelves. The PlayStation VR launches on October 13th and it has been speculated that the PS4 Neo would launch alongside, perhaps in a bundle, but Sony hasn’t committed to a launch date for the Neo. Presumably, they will announce the launch date of both consoles at the September 7th event but I would be shocked to see the Slim and Neo launched on the same day, especially if they will be launching hardware alongside the VR headset.
The other interesting tidbit with the Xbox One S is that there were small performance improvements in the S which was only discovered when it was in consumers’ hands. Similarly, there is no word whether there have been any performance gains or efficiencies found in the PS4 slim but it wouldn’t surprise me that they have found some.
Of course, the Slim will be secondary to the Neo at Sony’s big event in September. Sony’s more powerful PS4 Neo will be the flagship console as gaming hardware for your living room moves to a more iterative model similar phones, tablets and computer hardware. If and how this will be addressed by Sony could be more interesting than any hardware unveils, hardware bundles or price announcements.