Sony is the runaway leader this console generation with PS4 approaching 100 million sales, but Jack Tretton, who led SCEA from November 2006 to March 2014 and now runs a venture capital fund for independent developers, thinks PS5 will have a much tougher battle on its hands.
“The leader of the prior generation is always in a good position going into the new generation,” he told VentureBeat. “From what I’ve read about the specs of PlayStation 5, it sounds impressive. Their business model obviously worked well for them the last time around, and it doesn’t look like they’re going to deviate from that.
“They’ll be well-positioned,” he added. “But I do think they’ll face exponentially more competition than they did the last time around.”
Tretton said Google’s plans to enter the market with game streaming platform Stadia will provide healthy competition that “raises the bar as far as what a console publisher needs to do to have a leadership position”, something he believes is good for platform holders and consumers alike.
“But they’ve learned some valuable lessons in this generation,” he added of his former employer. “It should be great for everyone in the business, whether you’re a developer or a gamer. It’s going to keep everyone on their toes.”