The PlayStation 5 was launched less than two ago, which means gamers won't be seeing a PlayStation 6 anytime soon. However, that has not stopped excited fans from making calculated guesses, as evidenced by the numerous speculations on when the PS6 release date might be and what cool new features fans hope Sony would pack into its next-gen console.

Sony released the PS5 in November 2020, which means that gamers will have to wait for several years before the next console will hit the market. However, based on hints and the releases of past consoles, the PlayStation 6 release date will likely arrive by 2026 at the earliest.

Sony usually releases its PlayStation six or seven years apart. For instance, the PS5 was launched in 2020 or seven years after the release of the PS4 in 2013. Assuming Sony sticks to this trend, it's logical to expect the PlayStation 6 launch to happen by 2026 or 2027.

This was also hinted at by Sony's Executive VP of Hardware Engineering Masayasu Ito, who confirmed that the PS5 life cycle is around six or seven years. "Indeed, in the past, the cycle for a new platform was seven to 10 years, but in view of the very rapid development and evolution of technology, it's really a six to seven-year platform cycle," Masayasu said in an interview, according to TechRadar.

This six or seven-year lifecycle will give Sony enough time to incorporate the latest technologies into its next-gen console. "Then we cannot fully catch up with the rapid development of the technology; therefore, our thinking is that as far as a platform is concerned for the PS5, it's a cycle of maybe six to seven years," he added. "But doing that, a platform lifecycle, we should be able to change the hardware itself and try to incorporate advancements in technology."

However, gamers can expect Sony to release a PS5 Pro or PS5 Slim in the middle of the console's lifecycle, which is around 2023 or 2025. "That was the thinking behind it, and the test case of that thinking was the PS4 Pro that launched in the midway of the PS4 launch cycle," he added.

Hopefully, the upcoming PlayStation 6 console will be a lot smaller than the current PlayStation 5 - that is, if Sony cares about what console users are saying. The PS5 is a bit bulky, and many owners are probably complaining about its mammoth size.

PlayStation fans are also hoping that the PlayStation 6 will support a more affordable expandable internal storage option. While Sony is planning to drop a software update that will enable the PS5 to support internal storage expansion, the console only accepts compatible NVMe SSDs, which are quite expensive.

Gaming is biggest segment of Sony's business
Since the PlayStation launched in 1994, gaming has become the biggest segment of Sony's business. Photo: AFP / YOSHIKAZU TSUNO