One of the biggest shortcomings of the PlayStation 4 is its lack of backwards compatibility. And this shortcoming only became more glaring when the Xbox One added the feature about halfway through the generation.
Surely Sony Interactive Entertainment won't make the same mistake again with the PS5, right? Well, early reports and rumors suggest it won't, but at the moment, we don't know, because we hardly know anything about the PS5.
That said, industry analyst with the NPD Group, Mat Piscatella, reveals that he would be surprised if the PS5 didn't have backwards compatibility with the PS4's library.
“I’d be surprised if the PS5 were not backwards compatible with PS4 content, and Sony already has a streaming solution in market with PlayStation Now,” said Piscatella while speaking to GamingBolt. “It wouldn’t surprise me if both PlayStation 5 and the next Xbox took this type of approach, although I’m sure they’d do so in slightly different ways with different messaging.”
As mentioned above, we don't know a great deal about the PS5. However, one of things that does look more certain is backwards compatibility, at least if a semi-recently filed patent by Sony Interactive Entertainment is anything to go off of. Not only does the patent suggest the PS5 will be backwards compatible with the PS4, but with the PS3, PS2, and the PS1 as well. While this sounds too good to be true, when you consider Microsoft's big push and advancement in this area, it wouldn't be very surprising if Sony wanted to match Microsoft in this regard, who is likely to further double down on backwards compatibility with the next Xbox.
I personally think both the PS5 and and next Xbox will have backwards compatibility. What I'm not sure is how extensive and far back it will go, especially with the former. Microsoft has already showed a drive to embrace its legacy and unite its platforms under one roof, but Sony hasn't.
As always, all speculation and predictions -- even from industry analysts -- should be taken with a grain of salt.
And of course feel free to leave a comment letting us know what you think. Will the PS5 be backwards compatible?