A principal programmer at Sony is currently working with AMD's Ryzen technology, improving its micro-architecture compatibility with a key tool used in the PlayStation 4 development environment.
As there is no PS4 product that uses the the Ryzen processor, speculation has immediately risen that it is, in fact, headed into the incoming PS5. After all, why would a Sony programmer be working on Ryzen in relation to PlayStation, if no new product was going to be released that made use of it?
The news was originally discovered by Phoronix, a specialist Linux-based site. If true, it would mean that the PlayStation 5 CPU's potential power would be far in advance of the Xbox One X's, currently the most powerful console in the world. This would make sense in light of the recent confirmation by Sony Interactive Entertainment CEO John Kodera that there will be no new PlayStation until 2021.
The key evidence of the reveal comes in two forms, first from the programmer's LinkedIn page, which shows that he is currently an "active developer in LLVM based compiler for x86/SSE CPU targets".
Second, in the fact that he has recently (consistently over a multiple week period) being working the AMD Ryzen "znver1" micro-architecture support within the aforementioned PlayStation LLVM compiler stack.
In layman's terms, the programmer has been tuning and optimising support for AMD Ryzen in terms of PlayStation compatibility in its developer toolchain. These optimisation cleanups were logged, too, with last Friday being the last.
Now, the fact that the PS5 is going to use AMD Ryzen processor technology makes perfect sense to us here at T3. Historically, Sony has used AMD's CPU and GPU technology (combined into an APU) in its consoles, and recent reports have indicated that it will do so again, with economy of licencing and optimisation key drivers in the decision.
The fact that Sony would use AMD's next-generation 7nm graphics tech, codenamed Navi, and 7nm Ryzen processor tech to power its spectacular new PS5 gaming experiences, with work already underway on optimising them for the new console, also makes sense given that only this week Sony Interactive Entertainment boss John Kodera confirmed that the PS4 is entering the final phase of its life cycle.
The timing also seems to back up the speculation, too, in light of Sony's own Bend Studio recently advertising for programmer with "Next Gen game console experience", and the PS5 release date being widely reported as landing in 2020, or as other recent comments might suggest, even late in 2019.
Another piece of the PS5 puzzle has seemingly just slotted into place. To get up to speed with everything we already know about the PlayStation 5, be sure to check out our PS5 leaks and rumours page.