It’s an aural epidemic for gamers: the sound of your PS4 on your desk, blaring like it’s about to take off.
As the noise ramps up and the console radiates heat, I do wonder just how much it costs to run a next-gen console.
Well, with a dose of mercy to my bank account, the next major hardware release from PlayStation will be cheaper to run – as it will require less energy.
We’ve yet to be fed anything substantial about the tech involved in the PS5: there’s the usual stuff like faster load times, as well as ray-tracing technology and the potential to support 8K resolution.
Jim Ryan, President and CEO of Sony Interactive Entertainment, recently published a blog post announcing ‘formal commitments’ to the ‘Playing for the Planet’ alliance – designed to bring together industry leaders to achieve sustainability goals.
Ryan wrote on the PlayStation blog:
At SIE, we have made substantial commitments and efforts to reduce the power consumption of the PS4 by utilizing efficient technologies such as System-on-a-Chip architecture integrating a high-performance graphics processor, die shrink, power scaling, as well as energy saving modes such as Suspend-to-RAM.
I am also very pleased to announce the next generation PlayStation console will include the possibility to suspend gameplay with much lower power consumption than PS4 (which we estimate can be achieved at around 0.5 W).
If just one million users enable this feature, it would save equivalent to the average electricity use of 1,000 US homes.
Ryan added that SIE are going to ‘complete a carbon footprint assessment’ of their gaming services.
The Daily Star reported that the base model PlayStation 4 consumes the greatest amount of electricity per hour at 285 watts, closely followed by the Xbox One at 254 watts.
If you compare this to old-school consoles, such as the Sega Mega Drive, Super Nintendo, Nintendo 64 and Sony’s first PlayStation, they consume less than 150 watts per hour.
We are committed to informing consumers of energy-efficient console set-up and use. Our commitments are not only related to hardware and operations, we are also keen to help inform people interested in sustainability goals.
We have committed to working with the industry and climate experts to develop reference information for use by game developers that wish to include sustainability themes in games.
In addition, we will investigate potential PS VR applications that can raise awareness of climate issues and climate experts.
While it will cost less to run, there’s no word on how much the PS5 will actually cost to purchase. A brand new PS4 Pro (the 4K-ready model which is capable of supporting HDR) retails around £310 brand new at time of writing.
For now, we can get excited about the current generation’s upcoming releases – such as The Last Of Us: Part II, the hugely-anticipated follow-up to, for my money, the best game I’ve every played.
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After graduating from Glasgow Caledonian University with an NCTJ and BCTJ-accredited Multimedia Journalism degree, Cameron ventured into the world of print journalism at The National, while also working as a freelance film journalist on the side, becoming an accredited Rotten Tomatoes critic in the process. He’s now left his Scottish homelands and took up residence at UNILAD as a journalist.