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New Xbox and PlayStation Consoles Won’t Hit Shelves Until at Least 2028, Documents Reveal

If you were holding out to upgrade your console, think again. New reports have indicated that the successors of the PlayStation 5 or Xbox Series X|S won’t hit shelves until 2028 at the earliest. While a majority of us are still struggling to get our hands on a next-gen console, folks over Sony and Microsoft have already started thinking about the new generation of PlayStation or Xbox consoles. Recently, both Sony and Microsoft spilled the beans surrounding the potential launch timings for their new consoles in the documents concerning the ongoing probe of the UK regulator Competition and Markets Authority into Microsoft’s proposed AUD$96 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard.

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Grey camouflage collection for the PlayStation 5 | Image: Sony

Microsoft has been in hot water since its acquisition of Activision and things have been far from smooth. The CMA has been voicing its concerns about the possibility of an unfair advantage to Xbox, should the console manufacturer decide to make franchises such as Call of Duty exclusive to its consoles in the future. “This impact is likely to be felt especially at the launch of the next generation of consoles, where gamers make fresh decisions about which console to buy,” says the regulator.

In their reply, Microsoft told CMA that the next generation of consoles is several years out and the chances of the deal impacting anything are highly conjectural. Microsoft wrote, “The Parties do not dispute that some portion of gamers are likely to re-assess their console ownership at the start of a new generation. But they also note that this is an event that only occurs approximately every eight years.”

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‘Call Of Duty: Modern Warfare 2’ | Image: Activision

The company then further added that “the next new generation of consoles are not expected to be released before the fall of 2028 at the very earliest,” citing the ongoing global chip shortage and supply chain disturbances as the reason. “If Sony were indeed worried about a hypothetical withholding of Activision content, it would have at the very least six years to prepare a competitive response in time for the launch of the next generation of console,” said Microsoft.

Despite Xbox making clear (on several occasions) that it has no plans to make franchises like Call of Duty a console exclusive anytime soon, Sony contends that the proposed 2028 release window for Xbox’s next generation of consoles would be beyond the current deal to support Call of Duty on PlayStation platforms. “Microsoft has offered to continue making Activision’s games available on PlayStation only until 2027 … By the time SIE launched the next generation of its PlayStation console (which is likely to occur around (REDACTED)), it would have lost access to Call of Duty and other Activision titles, making it extremely vulnerable to consumer switching and subsequent degradation in its competitiveness,” says Sony.

Even though the exact release year of the PS5 successor (likely the PS6) has been redacted, it seems Sony plans to launch its next-gen consoles around the same time as Microsoft. A 2028 release window for the PS6 or a new Xbox console doesn’t seem anything new or shocking, but a looming question that still remains is, will Xbox and Microsoft be able to jump through all the hoops and seal its Activision deal?