Electronics giant Sony said it has stopped producing its PlayStation 2 consoles in Japan, fuelling online rumours a PlayStation 4 is in the pipeline.
Since launching in 2000 the PlayStation 2 (PS2), which has a Blu-ray player, has sold more than 150-million units worldwide, making it the best selling console of all time and was so popular it outsold the its replacement for the first three years.
Shipments have been "completed" for the hardware of PS2, the Japanese website of Sony Computer Entertainment said with no further comment.
The firm did not say what its plans were for production in other parts of the world. Software for the console is expected to continue being produced.
The announcement sent gamers posting messages online, with some surprised the PS2 was still being made. The news has sparked rumours that embattled Sony, which has been hit by falling sales owing to the popularity of games on smartphones, is planning a PlayStation 4, more than six years since launching the PS3. – Sapa-AFP