Microsoft’s Xbox and Sony’s PlayStation gaming consoles are already traditional enemies, even if Microsoft is relatively new in this business, when compared to the Japanese giant. Sony was the king of home entertainment since like forever and PlayStation achieved an iconic status among gaming enthusiasts. Just to make a point, Sony revealed their first PlayStation in 1994 while Microsoft hit the markets with the Xbox in 2001.
But, the geeks from Microsoft are starting to expand their business in almost everything related to information technology. They recently bought Nokia’s Mobile division, trying to conquer the smartphone market dominated by Android and iOS with their Windows Phone OS, and last month, they released their Xbox One, as the successor of the Xbox 360. In the same period of time, relatively speaking, Sony revealed the PlayStation 4, both of them being part of the eight generation of video game consoles.
As time passed by, both Microsoft and Sony realized that games are becoming increasingly expensive to create and develop, so the concept of a “platform exclusive” game became obsolete. Essentially, the latest generations of Xbox and PlayStation look the same, in terms of design, being black rectangular boxes and also they will entertain you with basically the same game titles. Truth be told, even if the Xbox One and the PlayStation 4 have similar specs in terms of hardware platform, Sony pumped up its gaming console a little bit more, there’s more juice flowing through the PS4 when compared to Microsoft ‘gizmo.
Let’s say that you’re playing Assassin’s Creed or Call of Duty, they will work just fine on either of these two consoles. But, most of the time, the PlayStation version of the game will look somehow better than the Xbox one, and, for the sake of argument ,Call of Duty Ghosts runs at 720p resolution on the Xbox (native) while on the PlayStation 4 comes with full HD 1080p. As you can see, Sony has some obvious advantages.
But, surprise, surprise! Last week’s Black Friday sales figures told us a different story. According to market analysts data, the Xbox One was the best seller gaming console on two of the biggest retail chains in North America : Wal-Mart and Target. Together with the previous generation, the Xbox 360, Microsoft’s platform accounted for %61 percent market share of gaming consoles sold on Black Friday, despite their hefty price tag. It is true that the Xbox 360 benefited from some huge discounts, but nevertheless, it’s a huge achievement for Microsoft!
On the other hand,the Japanese tech giant didn’t do so well on Black Friday : according to InfoScout, Sony’s PlayStation (both PS3 and PS4 sales combined) managed to gain only %30 percent market share in terms of consoles sold in the US.
The main complaints from customers regarding Sony’s PS4 were about the high game prices, while Microsoft was criticized for the lack of “must have” game titles. Nevertheless, the battle was fierce and the war was won (as InfoScout claims), for now, by Microsoft, by a large margin, at least in the US.
These sales figures and projections should be taken with a grain of salt, because there is one significant factor InfoScout forgot to mention: even if Microsoft outsold Sony by a large margin in two major retail store chains in the US on Black Friday, keep in mind that both companies managed to sell ~1,000,00 units within their first day of launching (according to the official sales figures). But, with a major difference: the PS4 was available when launched initially just in the US and Canada, while the Xbox One was launched in 13 countries simultaneously. And that makes a difference, in my book.
Bottom line, both gaming consoles are doing pretty cool, for example, in the UK, judging from last week’s sales figures, PS4 is dominating with 250,000 units sold vs just 150,000 from Xbox, according to MCV.
Let the good times roll, good luck, have fun, play hard!