With the PlayStation 4's design, there's more to consider than simply the console itself -- it's not a standalone product, and there's a lot of history associated with the brand. "When we started the product design for PS4, we didn't start by thinking about what the shape would be," says UX Platform Design Group chief designer Tetsu Sumii. "It was more about how we were going to create a new brand identity through the product."
Sumii, who was previously a part of Sony's mobile phone division, explains that "I just wanted to make a simple object for the living room. Sometimes products are a little too exaggerated. It should be simple. That's my thinking. I think about the horizontal, not just the vertical. I think about the 360-degree view. The reverse should be beautiful, too.
"I think the PlayStation brand image needs to be changed a little bit, as it's a new console, and we have to show what we're pointing towards for the future. So I thought it should be one of the most smart, cool, and intelligent products from Sony. Not just from Sony Computer Entertainment, but the company as a whole ... That's what we're striving for."
Personally, I'm a fan of the angles. A huge step up from the slim PS3, anyway.
PS4 Designer Tetsu Sumii: Every Angle Matters [PlayStation Blog]