Xbox One, PS4 lifecycle 'probably going to be shorter,' says AMD
Whereas the Xbox 360 and PS3 had eight and seven year lifecycles, respectively, before new consoles were introduced, AMD's Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Devinder Kumar believes the lifecycles of the Xbox One and PS4 will be much shorter. Speaking during the Bank of America Merrill Lynch Global Technology Conference, Kumar suggested that the next Xbox and the PlayStation 5 (assuming Sony sticks with its numbering system) are already being worked on.
AMD build custom APU's that contain both the process and the graphics processing unit for the Xbox One and PS4. An AMD chipset is also found in the Wii U. So it stands to reason that Kumar would have some sort of insight on the future of video game consoles. When asked about it, Kumar revealed that the company's clients may already be thinking about a future Xbox and PlayStation.
“The life cycle of the products are probably going to be shorter,” Kumar said. “Our customers are already thinking about what comes next. These are long life cycle products and as you know in the semi-custom space, you start with — three years before you introduce a product, a decision is made to use a particular company. In this case it was AMD. And then you go ahead and co-develop the product with the funding dollars frankly, mostly coming from our customers. And then when you introduce the product, there is really no expenses from R&D standpoint, no sales and marketing dollars and whatever dollars you generate from a gross margin dollar standpoint, falls to the bottom-line and that’s what excites us.”
Kumar's beliefs seem to contradict the views of many other analysts which predict it could be a very long time before we see new consoles. Some people even believe the Xbox One and PS4 may be the last "new" consoles we see from Microsoft and Sony as both companies are shifting towards the power of cloud computing and processing. Xbox One's Titanfall has already seen the benefits of the cloud, while Sony is meanwhile working on a new service -- PlayStation Now -- that could allow gamers to stream games instantly without having to download or install them first. If PlayStation Now is a success, then it's possible that Sony would no longer need to create consoles powerful enough to run future games; they could just handle the processing remotely and stream the data to your PS4.