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Sony could use 'cross-generational play' to soften next-gen transition

Sony Interactive Entertainment boss Jim Ryan has explained the company wants cross-generational unity between PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 owners when its next-gen console finally hits shelves.

Sony Interactive Entertainment boss Jim Ryan has explained the company wants cross-generational unity between PlayStation 4 and PlayStation 5 owners when its next-gen console finally hits shelves.

Discussing the console maker's next-gen plans with CNET, Ryan explained Sony hopes to offer "cross-generational play" that will let players carry progress over from their PS4 to their PS5. 

He also implied the feature would let PS5 owners continue playing with their friends on PS4, meaning entire friendship groups won't need to instantly upgrade systems in order to continue playing together.

"Whether it's backwards compatibility or the possibility of cross generational play, we'll be able to transition that community to next-gen," he explained. "It won't be a binary choice about whether you have to be ether on PlayStation 4 or next-gen to continue your friendship.

"The PlayStation community has never been bigger and it's never been more engaged. A lot of people we brought in, in 2013, are still with us. And the amount of time and money they invest in the platform is very humbling."

Back in May, Sony also explained that game streaming will be a major part of its next-gen strategy, and said it would use the tech to create a "massively enhanced PlayStation community where experiences can be seamlessly enjoyed independent of time and place -- with or without a console."

It also claimed that the PS4 will remain the "engine of engagement and profitability" for at least the next three years, which is an understandable sentiment given the console has sold over 91 million units worldwide.

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