The Sony PlayStation 4 is slated for Australian release on November 29, almost a year after the Wii U first became available in stores. It will cost $435 at launch, and is available for pre-order both on- and offline. It is a part of the eighth generation of consoles, and is competing against both Microsoft’s Xbox One and Nintendo’s Wii U.
Unique to the PlayStation 4 is the ability to convert smartphones and tablets into a second screen by connecting it to the system with the PlayStation App. Streaming video content will also be available through a cloud-based gaming service known as GaiKai. Additionally, the PlayStation Vita can be used to play most games on the system via Remote Play.
The PlayStation 4 supports used games, which can be traded, sold, or lent to a friend without any consequences. Unfortunately, there has been no indication that the system will be backwards compatible with games from previous iterations of the PlayStation. This includes both disc-based and digital copies.
Regarding hardware, the PS4 has an x86 processor, an 8-core combined CPU/GPU, 8 gigabytes of unified GDDR5 memory (compare that to the PS3’s 512 megabytes), and a local 500 gigabyte HDD, among other things. It has both a DVD and Blu-Ray drive, and is capable of HDMI output. Other features include WiFi and ethernet connectivity, wireless controllers, Bluetooth, and two USB ports. The console also has an “Instant On” feature, which allows it to boot up immediately.