That PlayStation cartridge could be an external SSD for the PS5

(Image credit: TechRadar)

We recently reported that Sony has patented a new gaming cartridge that could be used in a new PlayStation handheld device. However, it's possible that this PlayStation cartridge may actually be an external SSD for the PlayStation 5.

LetsGoDigital spotted the patent published by INPI (Instituto Nacional da Propriedade Industrial) in Brazil. Loosely translated, the patent is for 'configuration applied to / in data recording and storage device' and the artwork shows an old school-style gaming cartridge.

While the cartridge, could be for a handheld device, there are suggestions it could actually be an external SSD for Sony's next-generation hardware. Here's why that's more likely.

The PlayStation 5 will have a built-in SSD

We already knew the PlayStation 5 will have a built-in SSD. However, while it will certainly improve loading times for games, it's possible the amount of storage will be limited - especially considering how large PS5 games are likely to be.

Therefore, it's likely an external SSD will be needed to improve the amount of storage - especially as external SSDs are much more expensive than the external HDDs typically used with current consoles.

So it would make sense for Sony to patent its own external SSD, even if it's in the form of a gaming cartridge, that could easily be slotted into the PS5 to increase its storage capacity - which we expect it will need.

LetsGoDigital has rendered a 3D image of what the external SSD could look like. Check it out below:

(Image credit: LetsGoDigital)

While a Sony SSD could prevent players from buying any old SSD for the console, how that would affect the overall cost of the PS4 remains to be seen - especially considering the high price of the PlayStation 3 resulted in lower sales than the company expected. 

Again, this is just speculation and it's still possible the cartridge could be for a handheld device or for another piece of Sony hardware altogether. Let's wait and see.

Vic Hood
Associate Editor, TechRadar Gaming

Vic is TechRadar Gaming's Associate Editor. An award-winning games journalist, Vic brings experience from IGN, Eurogamer and more to the TechRadar table. You may have even heard her on the radio or speaking on a panel. Not only is Vic passionate about games, but she's also an avid mental health advocate who has appeared on both panels and podcasts to discuss mental health awareness. Make sure to follow her on Twitter for more.