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Sony "not even debating near-future PS4"

"The PS3 will continue to rise," says Hirai.

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Image credit: Eurogamer

We're nearly five years into the life of the PlayStation 3, but gamers shouldn't hold their breath as they wait for news on the PlayStation 4 - Sony hasn't even begun debating it yet.

"As regards home consoles, the PS3 was put into business in 2006, and it has a 10 year life cycle," Sony Computer Entertainment boss Kaz Hirai told Japanese news website PC Impress Watch (translated for Eurogamer by Keza MacDonald) following the announcement of the Next Generation Portable last month.

"This means that we aren't even at the halfway point. There are certainly many more desirable first and third party titles coming out. As we announce and implement new initiatives on an annual basis, I still believe in the importance of improving the software and feature set of the PS3.

"I think the value of the PS3 will continue to rise. Because of this, a near-future PS4 or next-generation home console is not something that we are even debating now. That is to say, we are still concentrating fully upon the PS3. Right now, I appeal to you to think of the PS3 and NGP as a new, co-operative partnership."

While Hirai's comments may disappoint some gamers, they come as no surprise – analysts, console manufacturers, publishers and developers agree: the current generation is set to last longer than any in the history of the game industry.

Microsoft has described the release of motion-sensing add-on Kinect as akin to the launch of a new home console, and hopes it'll add five years to the life of the six year-old Xbox 360.

And Sony has always insisted the PS3 has a 10 year shelf life, but has been less aggressive when describing the impact of its own motion sensing add-on: the PlayStation Move.

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