PS3 may not be around in 5 years, says Sony’s Shuhei Yoshida

The president of Sony Computer Entertainment Worldwide Studios (SCE WWS) has admitted PlayStation 3 may not be kicking around in five years time.

Speaking with, Shuhei Yoshida said that while Sony will pursue a parallel strategy for PS3 and PS4 for a couple of years, he remains unsure on the subject of the current-generation machine’s long-term success.

This is in contrast to the longevity of the PS2, which was seven years into its lifecycle when PS3 arrived in the U.K., and continued to sell for a number of years after. In fact, it was only recently that Sony confirmed that production for the system would cease.

"With this generational transition, from PS3 to PS4, the publishers are smarter now – they’re able to develop engines that support multi-generation platforms, not just multi-platform," said Yoshida-san. "Many games will come out this year on PS3 and PS4, and Xbox 360 and Xbox One, and PC, sometimes on Wii U as well. They’re very flexible, and they’ll be able to support PS3 as long as there’s a market.

"We’ll see. There’s still a lot of price difference in terms of the hardware and the games, and PS3 has been doing great – but it’s not like everyone owns a PS3 already. There’s always a group of consumers who come late in the cycle, people who wait for the price to come down. We’re expanding geographically as well. The demand from Latin America, for example, is really really strong for PS3.

"So we’ll have a parallel strategy with PS3 and PS4, like we had between PS2 and PS3. PS3 was launched in 2006, in the sixth year of PS2, but PS2 lasted for another five years. I don’t know if PS3 will last another five years – but definitely for the next couple of years, because of the price difference, the great library of games and the publisher side being able to support both."

PS3 received a fresh price cut in August, which consumers now able to pick up the 12GB model of Sony’s seven-year-old console for €199.

PS4 is scheduled to ship in the U.K. and Europe on November 29, with a U.S. launch due slightly earlier on November 15.

How many years do you think PS3 has left it before kicking the bucket? Sound off in the comments section below.