The PlayStation 5 is being developed internally at Sony, but nothing is known about the future console. However, IGN has noticed the filing of a patent pointing to a complete backward compatibility of old Sony consoles: the PS4, the PS3, the PS2 but also the PS1.
Although many predicted their imminent death, video game consoles have proven their resilience on their latest generation. The Nintendo Switch flies in two years of existence, when the PS4 keeps breaking records.
However, the generation Xbox One / PS4 will soon come to an end. Naturally, the succession is being developed internally, and we know little about it. IGN, however, managed to unearth very interesting information, which could be related to the future PS5.
The PS5, ultimate emulator of Sony consoles
This is a patent published by Sony on January 31, 2019. It describes a new software system allowing a platform to read the games of older generations without any problem.
Even though the device is often more powerful than the generation it is trying to emulate, the challenge is always to match the right resources to the right places. Depending on the architecture of the platform to emulate, it can become very complicated: we think in particular of the PS3 and its CELL processor which has always been a problem for developers.
Here, the system would perfectly mimic the older generations of console, allowing to launch any game by making them believe that they are running on their original platform. All Sony consoles of previous generations would be concerned, namely the PS4, PS3, PS2 and PS1.
The patent itself is not necessarily linked to the PS5 itself, and describes only a novelty software. That being so, it would be surprising if such a strong marketing argument is not used to sell Sony's next console.
First and foremost for the dematerialized
Do not imagine, however, insert your old PS2 games in your PS5 and read them without any problem. If that's a possibility, it's more likely that Sony is working on this system for the sake of its online store: the PlayStation Store.
It already provides the ability to play PS2 games through a homemade emulator, but titles that have been converted are relatively rare. We can also think that PlayStation Now, its cloud gaming service, will benefit first: it can already play PS4 and PS3 games on PS4, PC and macOS.
Similarly, Sony often files patents of this kind, but that does not mean that the related feature will be available soon … or even it will come out, anyway. But faced with an Xbox One that has managed to gain popularity since the introduction of Xbox 360 and Xbox's first backward compatibility, it seems unlikely that Sony will not respond.