The War of Next-Gen Consoles: Which Console Will Appeal to the Consumers

There’s been lots of hype and talk about the new next-gen consoles, the Xbox One and the PS4, mainly concerning all the details about the systems with new information being released each day as we come closer and closer to the release dates for the systems, but what are the things that the consumers will be taking into consideration when purchasing one of these new systems. Each has lots of differences this time around from pricing of the consoles, tech specs, online gaming, and exclusives for both. Gamers want the most bang for their buck when it comes to a big investment like a new gaming system but with all the specs and additions to these consoles more than just hardcore gamers will be purchasing an Xbox one or PS4 this holiday season. We’ll go over some of the pros and cons of the major differences in the specs and what might come down to a make or break for people on the fence about which one to get.

1) Pricing
This has been the main issue for people since day one when the systems were revealed. When the Xbox 360 and PS3 were released in November 2005 and November 2006 respectively there were huge price gaps that made consumers choose where their loyalties lie. The 360 was priced at $299 for the Core edition and $399 for the Premium edition while the PS3 was at a steeper price of $499 for the 20GB and $599 for the 60GB. The prices of the new consoles don’t vary as much as the release of the previous models, with the PS4 at $399 and the Xbox One at $499, but this price difference may have a bigger impact now. With so many big time games coming to both systems and the holiday season getting closer and closer it’s really a matter of preference when it comes to the price but when you live in a state with a high sales tax or your not a hardcore enough gamer to care which one you have, the PS4 may come out on top. Although there is no clear winner on price alone all the other specs about the systems may make you wonder about which one you really need.

2) Exclusives
When purchasing something like a new video game system it is imperative to make sure that you make the right decision. Microsoft and Sony have been making big names for themselves and have a huge amount of followers and dedicated gamers to there side and each has there own games that play only on there consoles. While Xbox has popular series such as Halo, Gears of War, Forza, and now popular in more recent years Kinect games, Playstation has titles such as God of War, Uncharted, Infamous and Little Big Planet. All of these have gotten very popular since going to the 360 and PS3 but games like these may not be able to keep people exclusive to just that system. The Xbox One has big games with a lot of hype coming our for it such as the new Halo game(untitled) for a shooter and Ryse: Son of Rome and Titanfall for great looking fast paced action games. These games may be big but may not have what it takes to save the system from falling short of the PS4 with exclusives like Infamous Second Son, Killzone Shadowfall,Final Fantasy XIV Realm Reborn and many others. The exclusives may make it or break it for real gamers,and in terms of amount the PS4 has almost twice as many exclusives as the Xbox One, but there are plenty of games that may have the average gamer not care about the exclusives as much. With Battlefield 4, Call of Duty Ghosts and Destiny coming out for both consoles there will be plenty of shooters for people who just want to play the fun, popular games as well as games like Assassins Creed 4, Final Fantasy XV, Kingdom Hearts 3 and Diablo 3. In addition to the major sports games that will all make their way to both system most games will be available for the PS4 and Xbox One. Again, it comes down to the consumer if the few games exclusive to that system will make a big deal but for those who want to play mostly the major games available on both then the better choice may be the PS4.

3) Applications and TV/Movie viewing
Many websites such as Hulu, Netflix, and HBO Go have made huge impacts over the years and have changed how people watch movies and tv shows. To watch shows on these sites you need to either watch them on a phone or tablet (not the most recommended), your laptop or computer, or on your tv through a third party device (Roku, Playbox, etc.) or dish out the cash for an internet tv. At the end of the day it may be hard and too much of a hassle to do all of this just to watch the shows on your tv instead of your tablet or computer but the new consoles make it easy to watch. I’ve dealt with netflix and hulu in every way, shape, and form but the easiest way is usually through a console/device hooked up to the tv or an internet tv. This is a huge selling point for people wanting to watch tv or use apps through their tv, but this also gives the new consoles a whole new demographic. With the addition of such applications such as Skype, News apps, video apps like youtube and many others give consumers more reason to buy these consoles but without all of the worry about the other specs. Many families who buy their children or loved ones a video game console don’t care about the specs as much like RAM or CPU so the major things that they look at when at the stores are memory and price. With both systems at a 500GB external hard drive the only real difference there is the price which may be important for families strapped for cash. In addition to the same apps and alike programs for both consoles Microsoft has also announced that the Xbox One won’t be Blu-ray compatible at first unlike the PS4 so those of you with a PS3 and huge stack of Blu-rays may want to stick with Sony. Also, with holiday deals and huge savings days like Black Friday and Cyber Monday many blu-rays will be for dirt cheap prices and can also mean for few sales for microsoft this holiday season.

4) Kinect and Playstation camera
The one thing a lot of families do use a lot is Kinect on the Xbox. The Kinect has made a huge uproar since its release because of involving the players movements and voice with their gaming experience. This is enhanced with the next-gen consoles, hence the name next-gen, with features like turning on your Xbox by voice, facial recognition and video recording. Sony dropped the ball a little bit more with there camera than the new Kinect. Kinect 2.0 has a higher resolution than the PS camera(1080p to 720p), IR blaster(which lets the camera see you clearly even in a pitch black room) and a totally different way to pinpoint your location(and in my opinion more advanced and precise).The Xbox One comes with its new Kinect 2.0 while for the PS4 you have to purchase the Playstation camera separately. This detail may drive people towards the new system but before you go buying one just consider that a PS4 with its Playstation camera is still $40 cheaper that the Xbox One by itself before taxes. Microsoft is the winner in terms of specs for their new camera so if your have the extra money and are torn between the two it is a good investment but before anyone is going to dish out some real cash for one of these just for Kinect ask a few questions about what the real differences are before deciding.

5) Realistic Usage
A lot of people want the new system just to have the newest, greatest toy and some want it because it’s time for an upgrade but just like with a new phone, computer, or car you have to ask yourself if it is a wise decision at this time. Many homes are strapped for cash around this time of year and some people just may not be impressed with the new systems enough to go and get one. The big question is how much you’ll really use it. If gaming, social media, and tv viewing at home are huge part of your weekly or monthly schedule then it may be an investment worthwhile but for those of you like me who its more of a luxury for then patience is a virtue. Also remember that when new systems come out that are supposed to be revolutionary or a huge step in technology can have huge faults in the beginning of its release. Remember when the Iphone 4 first came out. The big thing that was talked about day one was the issue it had with reception depending on how you held the phone. Even automobiles can have issues with new technology such as the the Toyota Prius which had still continued to have some issues with its braking system. When the last generation of gaming consoles came out there were problems with the beginning models that were later fixed such as the red ring of death on early 360’s and the PS3’s lack of display with the yellow light. Nothing is perfect in the beginning so before you go buying a new system hoping for the best, make sure it is the best and let all the kinks and bugs get worked out first so you don’t have to keep buying busted systems like myself and many others have learned.

In the end the winner by a slight margin I would say is the Playstation 4 as you get the most bang for your buck without needing all the extras but I’ll let everyone decide for themselves. While there is nothing wrong with the Xbox One per say but it just seems better for people strapped on cash like struggling students and families which are the people who will probably purchasing one of these systems. There are more specs about the consoles that concern other such as used game compatibility and maybe even design and feel of the system but here are the major topics that will be key talking points whether or not to purchase one of the next-gens as the holiday season goes on.

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