PlayStation 6 (PS6) release timeline revealed through official document

The ongoing CMA investigation into Microsoft's acquisition of Activision Blizzard claims that both PS6 and the next Xbox are at least seven years away.

Highlights
  • As part of CMA investigation into Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard, a new document has revealed the release window of PS6 and the next Xbox console.
  • Sony has expressed concerns regarding Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard as Call of Duty could become an Xbox exclusive in the coming years.
  • It remains to be seen whether the deal goes through and how it would affect the gaming landscape.

Console releases generally have a long lifespan, which seems to be the case with PS5 and Xbox Series X|S as well. The next consoles from Sony and Microsoft are at least 7 years away, according to the now public document (via PlayStation Lifestyle) that is part of UK’s Competition and Markets Authority investigation into Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard. Sony has made it quite clear that it is against this acquisition due to concerns of Call of Duty becoming an Xbox exclusive. That being said, PlayStation players do get exclusive Call of Duty content in each game, and Sony has a wide variety of exclusive games leading to more console purchases.

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Sony claims that Microsoft and Activision Blizzard deal “will harm competition, industry players, and users.” Microsoft responded by saying that the merger “increases competition in a market that Sony has long dominated.” The company has also acknowledged that PS5 exclusive are far superior to Xbox exclusive titles. The document also states that Sony believes it will lose “access to the Call of Duty license and other Activision games” until it is ready to launch a new console. Based on several reports, Sony had specifically stated 2027 as its next console’s release window, which will be seven years after the launch of PS5.

According to VGC, CMA has expressed concerns regarding Microsoft gaining ownership of Call of Duty after the acquisition. The regulator says, “This impact is likely to be felt especially at the launch of the next generation of consoles, where gamers make fresh decisions about which console to buy.” In response, Microsoft and Activision “do not dispute that some portion of gamers are likely to re-assess their console ownership at the start of a new generation.” The company also noted, “This is an event that only occurs approximately every eight years.” Microsoft added, “The next new generation of consoles are not expected to be released before the fall of 2028 at the very earliest.”

Sony seems to be working on a console refresh for PS5 including a PS5 Slim and a PS5 with detachable disc drive. Both Sony and Microsoft are also seemingly working on PS5 Pro and new Xbox Series X|S consoles, respectively. While none of these reports are confirmed yet, it won’t be surprising to see some type of console refresh from both companies before the launch of their next major console.