Next Xbox and PS4 to be unveiled at E3 2012?

Next-gen consoles could be close

Next Xbox and PS4 to be unveiled at E3 2012

Rumours are rife that this year's E3 could be one of the most important shows in gaming history, with the Sony PS4 and next Xbox to be announced.

Although both the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 are getting a little long in the tooth, both have performed admirably in the past year, and with the arrival of motion sensors for both the life-cycle of this generation's consoles is clearly not complete.

However, the announcement of replacements grows increasingly likely with every passing year, and respected industry magazine MCV is now stating that both Sony and Microsoft will choose this summer to announce the PS4 and Xbox 360 successor respectively.

Spearheaded

"Xbox 360 has spearheaded one of the longest console generations ever, so it shouldn't be a big surprise that Microsoft's well into development of a successor – and that's certainly what the industry is saying," CVG's Andy Robinson told TechRadar.

"A patent discovered earlier this week has suggested that Microsoft intends its new console to sport DVR functionality, and there's also talk of a dual-SKU strategy similar to the Xbox 360 launch – one for gaming, one for media consumption.

"Sony Computer Entertainment boss Jim Ryan has stated that allowing Microsoft to get the jump on the PlayStation 4 would be an "undesirable" situation", so expect Sony to show some next-gen cards too."

It's certainly already a big year for faltering Sony as it looks to put the annus horribilis that was 2011 behind it.

The arrival of the PS Vita will be a key arrival for the beleaguered Japanese giant, and announcing a successor to the PlayStation could either buoy the company or leave it further mired if it does not tick all the right boxes.

You can check out what TechRadar expects to see in the next generation in our videos below: