Yes, we are finally welcoming in a new generation of video game consoles. The PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X are here, and so the industry is on the verge of another leap forward. It is a very exciting time, especially if you happen to be an online gamer.
But, as the world embraces ever faster, and more advanced technology, the question is now being asked more than ever; what comes after the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X? The answer, interestingly enough, may not be what many expect. It turns out that physical hardware may land up being entirely irrelevant, and that things may not really get much better than they already are.
How Big Is The Jump?
So, first and foremost, just how much more powerful are the new consoles going to be than their previous versions? The truth is that the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X are, in reality, only mostly catching up to technology that has already been available for years now. They both will indeed have faster, better components, but given how far behind the previous components were, the leap is not going to be especially significant. Not as much as most are hoping for.
The biggest addition to both consoles is the inclusion of an SSD, or solid state drive, which will reduce load times. SSDs have been available in PCs for years.
Overall, many gamers don’t appreciate that gaming advancements are a case of diminishing returns. The leaps between PlayStation 1 and 2 seemed massive, due to the still blossoming industry. However, the technology jumps that followed were less and less significant, given that graphics hardware can only be advanced to a peak, before eventually seeming irrelevant.
The real advancements have been in the sizes of game development teams, not hardware power.
A New Direction
As it stands, a generation beyond the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X is seeming increasingly less necessary in virtually every regard. There will, however, certainly always be plenty of games to play.
It seems more likely that after the next generation of consoles, the gaming world will be taken in a new direction. As internet speeds jump dramatically, and 5G is rolled out, physical hardware is becoming less relevant. Projects like Google Stadia, although presently having been almost a universal flop, are almost certainly going to be far more popular in the future.
Why bother having hardware at all, when gaming can be handled by a remote server?
VR Makes A Return?
There will, however, still be some room for hardware technology like VR. The advancement didn’t exactly take off like most were anticipating, but it also didn’t die out. This means that there is room for the hardware to still become more mainstream in the future, assuming that prices finally come down to affordable levels, and supported software is still released.
If VR will or won’t make a comeback remains to be seen, but given that interest remains periodically strong, chances are we haven’t heard the last of it.