Sony ships out thousands of mysterious dev kits...what are they for?

Sony is shipping thousands of mysterious software development kits from overseas to its Oakland, California SIE division.

@DeekeTweak
Published Wed, Mar 2 2022 9:59 AM CST   |   Updated Mon, Mar 28 2022 2:32 AM CDT

United States import records show that Sony has shipped thousands of mysterious software development kits from across the world to its Oakland, California branch.

Sony ships out thousands of mysterious dev kits...what are they for? 4 | TweakTown.com
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Sony Interactive Entertainment may be preparing to ship dev kits of new PlayStation hardware to video game makers. According to domestic trade ledgers, the billion-dollar games giant has shipped approximately 2,374 cartons of dev kits from October 2021 to January 2022.

The breakdown looks like this:

  • January 2022 - 434 CTN (cartons), 4730 kg, Japan -> Oakland, CA
  • December 2021 - 980 CTN, 8712 kg, Japan -> Oakland, CA
  • November 2021 - 480 CTN, 5218 kg, Japan -> Oakland, CA
  • October 2021 - 240 CTN, 2612 kg, Korea -> Oakland, CA
  • October 2021 - 240 CTN, 2612 kg, Japan -> Oakland, CA
Sony ships out thousands of mysterious dev kits...what are they for? 2 | TweakTown.comSony ships out thousands of mysterious dev kits...what are they for? 23 | TweakTown.com

Although these specific devkit units have shipped out well after the PS5's launch in 2020, that doesn't mean they aren't PS5 devkits. That seems to be most likely solution.

If the kits are based on future hardware, it's possible that they are for the PlayStation VR 2, the next-gen HMD built specifically for Sony's new PS5 console. Sony recently showcased the PSVR2's new look and the headset may be ready for a 2023 release.

The devkits could also be early test units for an upgraded PlayStation 5 Pro system. However this may be unlikely due to the ongoing chip shortage that has constrained existing PS5 production; Sony probably wouldn't start making a PS5 successor when it can't even produce enough PS5 models.

Reports indicate Sony could move the PS5 to TSMC's 6nm (N6) node for faster time-to-market production and availability. The move to 6nm would not boost power as the N6 node is actually part of the fabricator's 7nm family (which includes 7nm, 7nm+, and 6nm).

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Derek joined the TweakTown team in 2015 and has since reviewed and played 1000s of hours of new games. Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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