Microsoft might have won the battle of the last-gen console wars, with its Xbox 360 having narrowly claimed victory over Sony’s PlayStation 3, but this time around, things haven’t gone entirely the software company’s way. The PlayStation 4 has had a great start since both it and the Xbox One rolled out late last year, and while the former’s more powerful hardware will no doubt have helped to reel in the purists, pricing has certainly played a part in these early stages. The Xbox One, after all, launched at a higher price than its Japanese competitor, but with the Windows maker having already made the console cheaper by selling it without the Kinect sensor, it’s now in line for its very first price drop later on this year.
There’s no doubt that the original Kinect took the world by storm when it was released four years back, but while the interactive, immersive experience may have been a major hit, selling the Xbox One with Kinect as standard was a brave move that might have hindered sales. The One now sells at a price comparable to the PlayStation 4, provided that the consumer is willing to forgo Kinect, and as of November 2nd, will drop from the current $399 price bracket to $349.
The Assassin’s Creed and Sunset Overdrive bundles will be available at the new price point, and there will also be a special deal for those looking to try out the all new Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare. Users can pick up the Advanced Warfare bundle, which comes with the game and an official custom control pad, for just $449.
With the holiday season being such a lucrative one, it will be interesting to see how Sony counters this. There have been no price reductions as yet for the PlayStation 4, but with the Xbox One about to get cheaper and some big games headed to market, Sony will know that the early lead it has established could easily be diminished if it allows Microsoft to lure in those waiting for the cheaper options.
There’s likely to be a slim version of the PS4 announced at E3 next year, and given that we’re only a year into this battle, it’s way too early to gauge which will emerge victorious. With that said, Microsoft has thrown down the gauntlet now, and with GTA V getting a re-release soon for both top-end consoles, could entice fence-sitters to go with the Xbox One.
Your move, Sony.