PS4 to support 4K playback?

As part of its push to get consumers using the new HD standard, rumours have suggested that Sony will add 4K support to the PS4.

As part of its push to get consumers using the new HD standard, rumours have suggested that Sony will add 4K support to the PS4.

PlayStation 4 concept art (Credit: Tai Chiem)

PlayStation 4 rumour and speculation has been coming thick and fast almost since the PS3 hit shelves. This latest rumour, however, has a certain ring of possibility to it. It's no secret that most home-theatre manufacturers are hoping that 4K will be the success that 3D wasn't, encouraging consumers to upgrade their ever aging TVs and A/V gear.

Sony has been on the forefront of this push, and BGR — a tech publication with a solid history of having the lowdown when it comes to exclusive breaking news — recently stated that its sources said that Sony will be releasing a flagship 80-inch 4K LED TV "before the holidays". CNET later confirmed that this would actually be an 84-inch 4K-capable TV, to be launched at IFA 2012 next week.

Just days later, BGR is once again grinding the Sony rumour mill, and this time its sources are saying that the PlayStation 4 will support 4K-resolution playback. The move certainly makes sense on paper; much like Sony pushed Blu-ray by integrating it into the PS3, a PS4K would also continue the theme of consoles being as much about home entertainment as they are about gaming.

Whether the timing really works for Sony is another matter, however. It's worth recalling that Sony hasn't even officially confirmed that there will be a PlayStation 4 (which may or may not be currently code-named Orbis). If Sony is hoping to be pushing 4K as a household word by the end of 2012 or the start of 2013, then it will need to at least be formally acknowledging the PlayStation 4 sooner rather than later.

In June this year, during a post-E3 interview, Andrew House, CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment, told MCV that "the right time to talk about new advances in hardware is when you can demonstrate a significant leap on the current experience, and something that is going to be attractive". Whether 4K is that "significant leap" remains to be seen.

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