Sony might be unveiling the next generation PlayStation 4 on 20 February. If the rumors are true then it is a huge deal and will up the ante with Microsoft. The phantom Xbox 720 is another rumor that does not want to stop from emerging every few months. The details have been very scarce as Sony does not want to show their hand prior to the event.

Has Sony CEO Kaz Hira been purposefully telling the press that the Xbox 720 is to launch before the PlayStation 4? He made the point that if Microsoft launch their console before Sony, Sony would “improve” their console before launching. However, that means little now as it seems that in 2 weeks time they might be making the first move.

The “PlayStation Meeting” which is seen on invites to the Sony event on  20 February is so vague that it could be for the Sony PSP Vita, an update to the current PlayStation 3. There is a product being unveiled by Sony but which one?

Let’s assume it is the Sony PlayStation 4. What does Sony need to do to make a statement aimed at Microsoft? Deeper social integration, playing console games with friends via the Internet is no longer a feature but making it better could be a huge plus for new owners. Backwards compatibility with the PlayStation 3 games to ensure that owners do not need to buy more new games. It may sound trivial but it is a huge barrier when deciding on buying a new console. Then they have to create a controller that can act as an independent console. Why? Well the iPad is cannibalizing the sales of consoles and being able to carry it around with you is a potential sale. Does that mean that they need to maybe adapt the Sony PS Vita to ensure easier integration with the PlayStation 4? Maybe ..

Sony has one last change to turn their console business around and if the PlayStation 4 disappoints then it is trouble, deep trouble for the Japanese business. Will you buy a PlayStation 4 in 2013?