For a lot of gamers, 2013 marked the beginning of a special milestone. Two of the biggest companies in gaming, Microsoft and Sony, were on the verge of releasing their new gaming consoles – the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 (PS4) respectively. These consoles were dubbed as the next generation of console gaming, delivering cutting edge technology to the living rooms of gamers everywhere. Unfortunately for Microsoft, things didn’t go their way almost from the very beginning. At one of the biggest gaming conventions of the year known as e3, Microsoft let down a legion of die-hard fans by introducing features no one wanted to see:
- showing sports and T.V. to an audience that was only interested in games;
- introducing Digital Rights Management (DRM), which prevented gamers from using second-hand games on the Xbox One, and trading their games with friends;
- no backwards compatibility with Xbox 360 games; and
- Microsoft decided to price their console at $100 more than their nearest competitor, Sony.
Almost over night experts were calling game over on the ‘console war’. Skip forward to three years, Microsoft has reengineered what made their 2013 reveal such a disaster. Sports and T.V. are no longer the main focus, but instead Xbox One offers a varied range of different games. In fact, as of writing this article, Microsoft offers 880, 360 titles that can be played on the Xbox One.
However, none of these new features have helped Microsoft win their war against Sony. In 2015, Microsoft announced a more powerful version of the Xbox that is slated to release later this year, the Xbox Scorpio. I won’t bore you with the technical specs but apparently, it’ll have enough power to outperform the PlayStation in every way imaginable. Sony, I’m looking at you.
I believe that the Xbox Scorpio will be a good thing for gamers, the gaming industry, and all of the Sony fan boys out there. Here’s why: For the last 3+ years, Sony has been the console market leader (53%). This lead has made them complacent and, dare I say, lazy. When Xbox offered backward compatibility, the PS4 didn’t and when Xbox implemented a games preview scheme, the PS4 didn’t as well. In short, a new and more powerful system will force Sony to up their game.
As a PS4 owner, I want Sony to innovate and offer me new experiences so that I can get the most out of their console. I think that you’ll agree that competition is not only good but also vital so that customers get the highest quality products available. When one company simply sits on their laurels as Sony has been doing for the last 3+ years, they become anti-consumer and that’s bad for everyone, especially for gamers.