Speculation of PlayStation 5 game cartridge function or PlayStation Vita 2 development fueled by patent
It seems game cartridges could be back on the agenda at Sony Interactive Entertainment. LetsGoDigital has spotted a patent application with Brazil’s INPI that shows a drawing of a cartridge (see below). The patent file has the prosaic title “Configuration applied to/in device data recording and storage” (translated from Brazilian Portuguese). Tellingly, a Sony senior art director, Yujin Morisawa, has his name attached to this particular patent. Morisawa’s name has frequently been linked with PlayStation-related technology.
There have been some that have opined in the past that the PS5 could come with a game cartridge slot, but this seems highly unlikely. The image of the devkit that was leaked recently didn’t show such a slot, although there was an obvious sign of a slot for Blu-ray discs. Also, it would seem somewhat anachronous to fit a high-tech piece of hardware like the PS5 with a game cartridge slot – so this leads speculation toward a new handheld console from the PlayStation manufacturer.
However, this seems almost as unlikely as the PS5 having a game cartridge slot. The Sony PlayStation Vita, which utilized game cards for accessing software, was the company’s last effort at the handheld console market - and it was globally discontinued in early 2019. Many believe Sony would rather focus solely on the PS5 as the future of its games console lineup and leave smartphone OEMs and Nintendo to gobble up what is left of the handheld gaming market. There has been no definitive sign of PS Vita 2 development.
Of course, the patent could end up meaning nothing. This particular game cartridge design may never go into production, or it might be for Sony’s toy platform Toio, which has sparked erroneous PS5 speculation in the past thanks to leaked patents pertaining to it. It doesn't seem too likely that the game cartridge patent is heralding the development of a PlayStation Vita 2, and as mentioned above it just seems too incongruous for the highfalutin PS5. We will just have to wait and see what SIE is up to.
LetsGoDigital (in Dutch)