PlayStation 5 news is quite scarce and the rumours that have surfaced didnít shed much light on Sonyís plans for this hypothetical upcoming home console. However, something substantial about a potential PS5 has now surfaced and that is possible backwards compatibility with all previous PlayStation models!

What do we know?

From what could be discerned by flicking through various websites, the news about the PS5 being potentially backwards compatible with previous PlayStation models comes from an article on a Japanese website (Hokanko-alt) who reported about Sony registering a patent having to do with backwards compatibility. Apparently, this patent discuses a more accurate method for achieving backwards compatibility by deceiving software written for older systems that itís running on the original CPU. According to Sonyís patent, this method can eliminate synchronisation errors which may lead to data being written over prematurely and other side effects while emulating an older system on newer hardware. Other than this, itís also been revealed that the PlayStation 5 could have helper CPUs like the PS2ís Emotion Engine as they might be too difficult to emulate through software.

When looking at the above information, it seems that Sony is patenting common emulation techniques but some individuals online have pointed out that the current description of the patent is somewhat vague. As a result, the patent in question could be referring to some type of hardware-assisted emulation, a more accurate way of switching between multiple CPUs of different architecture and/or more accurate CPU clock governing to provide the most accurate emulation experience possible. On the other hand, Ars Technica says that the PlayStation 5 might be a PS4 Pro-esque update and the patent might not be referring to backwards compatibility with PS1-PS3 consoles.

What would this mean for the normal user?

Undoubtedly, a PS5 system that would allow you to play PS1-PS4 games would be very convenient and you wouldnít have to wait for remasters (or classics) to play older games.

If the PS5 were to have backwards compatibility with all previous PlayStation models, it would be quite huge for many console gamers. This is because:
◾With one console, youíd be able to play through the library of a 5 different home consoles which would let you play thousands of games without having to switch consoles
◾To complement the PS5ís hypothetical backwards compatibility features, the PlayStation Store could get many more older games added to it which would make acquiring older console games much less of a pain especially if theyíre priced decently
◾Such a PS5 console could have a great deal of hacking potential as the PS3/PS2 emulation software could be more prone to hacking than the native software similar to the PSP emulator on the PSVita
◾Technology using Artificial Intelligence to upscale lower resolution images to a higher resolution is currently being developed which means that the PS5 could potentially have upscaling capabilities that make older games look better!
◾If the PS5 gets native hacks, more emulators could be installed on it which would allow you to emulate almost every console released before it with the exception of 8th generation consoles.