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PlayStation 4 could be 'future platform' in development at Sony

Sony could be working on a successor to the PlayStation 3. In a call with investors, a high-level Sony exec mentioned that work on a "future platform" is "already under way".

Sony could well be beavering away on a new home console to follow the PlayStation 3, if cryptic comments from a high-level Sony exec are read in the right light, at a bit of an angle, and if you squint.

Speaking on a call with investors, Sony's chief financial officer Masaru Kato said that a "future platform" to follow the PS3 "is already under way."

Kato had been asked to explain why Sony was spending more on research and development.

"For the home equipment the PS3 still has a product life... but this is a platform business, so for the future platform -- when we'll be introducing what product I cannot discuss that -- but our development work is already under way, so the costs are incurred there."

Mysterious stuff. Sony's obviously keen not to give anything away, and we don't expect to see anything regarding this "future platform" for some time yet -- even though Nintendo will be unveiling a new console to take the Wii's throne in just over a week, at the E3 show in LA.

It's possible Kato was referring only to Sony's upcoming handheld, the Sony NGP, which is expected to be ejected from the Sony delivery ward towards the end of the year -- but why wouldn't Kato be able to discuss that? Kotaku reports that in an interview with J-Cast News, Sony reps were "surprised" to see Western websites writing about the PS4, and that the "future platform" is indeed the NGP.

Regarding the PS4, Sony unsurprisingly said, "We have nothing to announce at this time." Still, we'd bet a big bag of bourbon biscuits that Sony's hard at work on a new PlayStation console, even if a launch is years away. The PlayStation 3 hasn't dominated the scene like its all-conquering predecessor, so Sony will be desperate to get its next machine right.