Sony is working hard to give PlayStation 4 owners plenty of reasons to upgrade to the brand new PS5 as fast as possible once the console hits stores ahead of the holidays next year. But is the company also quietly developing a different type of video game console, and it’s like nothing we’ve seen from Sony in years.
The same site that uncovered a Sony patent showing what looked like the next-gen PlayStation 5 console, and which turned out to be the actual design of the PS5 dev kit sent to studios, found new Sony documentation that shows a game cartridge. As you can see in the image below that was uncovered by LetsGoDigital, Sony is still considering game cartridges for some sort of new product.
That’s the kind of design you would not expect to see on next year’s high-end consoles. Both the PS5 and the Xbox Scarlett should pack fast SSDs — the new PlayStation is confirmed to feature a fast solid-state drive that will make loading screens a thing of the past. Moreover, Sony has also revealed that the PS5 will let players install game content selectively. Some may choose to play only the single-player campaign of a certain game, while others might only want the multiplayer option.
The mysterious game cartridge in the image above might be used on some sort of mobile PlayStation device that Sony could be manufacturing in the coming years, but that’s just speculation at this point. The PlayStation Vita has been retired and there’s no indication that a sequel is in the making, that that portable console introduced back in 2011 was the last gaming device from Sony to use carts. Is Sony now toying with the idea of releasing a new model or making its own version of the recently released Nintendo Switch Lite?
As the Dutch blog explains, Yujin Morisawa is the inventor listed on the new patent, and he’s the Sony senior art director involved in all PlayStation products. The patent was filed with the Brazilian IP authority, as was the case with the PS5 dev kit design that we saw leak earlier this year.
If Sony is indeed making a new handheld console, it’s certainly not talking about it at this point. On the contrary, Sony has been revealing plenty of PS5 details in interviews so far, stopping just short of announcing actual availability details and presenting the official design of the next PlayStation. Sony is expected to unveil the new console next February, and it’ll be interesting to see if any mention is made of another upcoming Sony console that uses game carts.
UPDATE: The same LetsGoDigital speculates the cartridges might be modular SSD units that could help Sony keep the PS5 price down at launch.