IDC analysts Lewis Ward says next generation consoles will probably launch in 2021, but current-gen hardware sales in 2019 might change that.
As rumours surrounding the possible reveals of next generation console hardware in the near future continue to mount, the question of when Sony and Microsoft might deem it appropriate to launch their new systems has been more prevalent than ever. Microsoft’s Phil Spencer has publicly stated that they’re currently at work on the next generation of Xbox, while recent rumours have pegged the PS5 for a 2019 reveal as well.
Does that mean a launch for both systems might come as soon as 2020? IDC analyst Lewis Ward doesn’t think that’ll be the case. Speaking exclusively with GamingBolt, Ward said that he projects both the PS5 and the next Xbox to launch in 2021, but that hardware sales for current-gen consoles in 2019 might have an impact on that.
“I’m not sure,” said Ward when asked whether he thought Microsoft would be looking to launch the next Xbox before Sony launches the PS5. “My model currently projects both consoles will debut in 2021, a year later than many analysts seem to think. What happens to sales in 2019 will likely determine who is right, and narrow the launch window for next-gen consoles.”
There have, in fact, even been some who feel that next-gen systems might end up launching in 2019 itself. When asked about whether he thought that was a possibility, Ward said, “No, I don’t. Why would Sony skip E3 and then launch a new console shortly afterward that with little buildup? It ain’t gonna happen.”
Any of the two next gen consoles launching in 2019 definitely seems like a long-shot, but whether or not they will launch in 2021, or in 2020, is the more relevant question. Both seem like very likely scenarios, and as Ward points out, I think Sony and Microsoft will ultimately make their decision based on whether or not the PS4 and the Xbox One are able to continue their strong momentum of sales in 2019 as well.
As for an announcement, fellow industry analyst Mat Piscatella suggests reveals from both, Microsoft and Sony, will probably come in 2019. In relevant news, recent reports have suggested that Microsoft are working on as many as four new Xbox models. Read more on that through here. Also, stay tuned to GamingBolt for our full interview with Ward.