Although Sony has confirmed that they will launch another console after the PS4 and PS4 Pro, a PS5 release date has not been announced yet.
The announcement of a new console generation would effectively ring the end for the current crop of consoles, bar only the Switch.
With the Switch not even a year old, it seems unlikely that we’ll see a replacement device anytime soon.
Analysts have also predicted in the past that Nintendo would focus instead on releasing new versions of the Switch, perhaps slimmer models that offer more space.
However, the PS5 release date would bring a close to the PS4’s current domination of the games market, with Microsoft also likely to launch an Xbox Two around the same time.
And the latest prediction on the subject has provided one of the longest forecasts yet, suggesting a release could be delayed to as late as 2021, as the current PlayStation continues to dominate the hardware charts.
That’s according to IDC research director Lewis Ward, who told Gamingbolt that Sony’s console be a long time coming.
“Right now I think PS5 and the next-gen Xbox will arrive in 2021, but that’s really just a tentative placeholder in my forecast,” he said.
The popularity of the PS4 could have a factor in when Sony decides to release the PlayStation 5.
Indeed, Ward believes the PS4 will be the first current-gen console to hit 100 million sales, potentially by 2019.
“I think the PS4 will probably get there in 2019,” Ward added.
Industry analyst Michael Pachter has spoken about the PS5 release date on a number of occasions.
His most recent prediction on the subject puts the PS5 release in 2019 or 2020 – with a 2020 launch date more likely.
Pachter said: “I think that’s exactly when you’ll see one (PS5) 2019 or 2020, and if I had to bet, it’s 2020.
“Sony’s making so much money with the PS4 that I think they’ll continue to milk it as long as they can milk it.
“And I think the natural extension of that is the PS4 Pro becomes the default PS4, and they just knock that price down to $250 when they can and they keep selling it — a tonne of those.
“The PS5 is probably going to be their real 4K device, and so it just feels to me that they’re not going to launch the PS5 until sales momentum for the PS4 slows, and it just hasn’t.
Ubisoft CEO Yves Guillemot, meanwhile, has also said that they believe the PS5 release date is a “minimum of two years away”.
This would mean the PlayStation 5 could come out in 2019 at the earliest, giving the PS4 a lifespan of six years.
Guillemot also said he believes the next Xbox will also come out at the same time as the PS5.
“As Sony launched PlayStation 4 Pro last year and Microsoft Xbox One X this year, we think we still have a minimum of two years in front of us before something new is coming,” he said during an earnings report.
“But that’s our perception, we don’t have any confidential information on that front.”