Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Did XBox Hurt Its Future?

The Xbox One has yet to be released, but it certainly has raised the voices and irked a number of gamers.  "Earlier in the day, Microsoft had elicited groans from gamers when it announced restrictions on used games for the Xbox One and said players had to log onto the Internet for authentication."  With a price tag hitting $500 and an always on and connected platform, some wonder who the audience for the new box really is.  Perhaps too it is trying to be more than what gamers really want from a device, trying to replace the cable box in the home.  Will current XBox 360 owners upgrade or not and will the XBox One attract new users?

For Sony, the release of a new Playstation 4 at this time might just encourage some loyalties to switch to them.  First, the PS4 will cost $100 less.  "Sony also drew cheers from the audience at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in Los Angeles when it said the PS4 would run secondhand games and did not require an always-on Internet connection."  If gamers find compelling titles and a welcoming user experience, they might just find the share of market shift to their favor. 

Given the two different directions each platform is taking, the gloves are coming off, and a fight is imminent.  For other platforms, like the Nintendo Wii, timing is crucial for them to share how they wish to compete in a very tough gaming battle.  For this household, I can only share what my son, a current XBox user, is thinking.  He hates the authentication and always on issue as well as the fact that older games won't play on the new device.  It might just be time to look at the PS 4 and its games.  Put head to head, it will be fascinating to see which new platform, XBox One or PS4 wins this battle.

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