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EA Labels boss: Xbox 720, PS4 'coming out in about a year's time'

FIFA publisher going after next gen "in a big way"

EA Labels president Frank Gibeau has given perhaps the most reliable indication yet that Microsoft and Sony will release next gen consoles in 2013.

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Having recently teased attendees at his Gamescom keynote by claiming to have seen the Xbox 360 and PS3 successors first-hand, the executive has now told Bloomberg TV:

"We're into the sixth or seventh year now of this generation of hardware and so it's a mature market. In terms of [software sales] fatigue, I consider it more of a mature market, a stable market.

"[Sales] flatten out a bit towards the end [of a console cycle]. Typically a transition year before new hardware comes out you see that flattening effect inside of the business.

"The new hardware is going to be coming out in about a year's time, so we're right around this period in time when the market's going to slow down and then you have a new game changer coming with all new technology, all new hardware, and another growth period."

Asked if the new consoles will be called Xbox 720 and PlayStation 4, Gibeau responded: "I don't know what they're calling them, I'm under non-disclosure so I can't comment too much about what they're specifically doing."

He went on to say EA's relishing the prospect of a new console generation. "'Transition is our friend' is kind of the saying we have around EA because it gives you a chance to reset everything. And we've done enough transitions in this business that we know what we're doing, and we're going to go after this one in a big way. But it is a time where you see new companies emerge as leaders and some traditional companies fall away."

EA said in May it will invest $80 million in next gen games during the current business year ending March 31 2013.

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