When Sony purchased Gaikai last year, many wondered when the company would integrate the cloud-gaming service into its products. If rumors turn out to be true, it looks like the upcoming PS4 might be where we see it first.
The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Sony will use the service to stream existing PlayStation 3 games to their brand new console when it launches. While previous Sony consoles featured some sort of emulation, the PS4 is rumored to use AMD x86 chips in its architecture, making software emulation a very tall order.
The original launch PlayStation 3 actually included an entire PS2 chipset inside it for hardware emulation, but it was later removed to drop the price. Sony is rumored to be targeting a $400 price point for its next console, so hardware emulation through including the PlayStation’s Cell processor inside the PS4 can be pretty much ruled out a this point.
Utilizing a streaming service to bring emulation to its brand new console could be a very smart move for Sony, but it’s not without its own problems. Gaikai, before being purchased by Sony, streamed PC games to users — not PS3 games. Unless Sony has built a server farm with thousands of PS3′s ready to stream games, it will be very interesting to see what workaround or development the company has made to make this a possibility, if it does indeed turn out to be true.
As you might have noticed, the picture above is also a new shot of the recently leaked PlayStation 4 controller prototype, so it’s starting to look like it will indeed be based on this in its final form.
Just a few more days, and all of this will be clear.