Xbox One vs PS4: the ultimate showdown - TechCentral

Xbox One vs PS4: the ultimate showdown

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Sony’s PlayStation 4 (PS4) has sold more than 10m units to consumers since its launch in November last year, while Microsoft’s Xbox One has struggled to muster 5m sales to retailers during the same time. Is Microsoft still being unfairly punished for the many strategic missteps and PR gaffes it made in the run-up to the launch of its console last year?

One of those mistakes is the late launch of the machine in smaller markets such as South Africa. Where Sony managed a true worldwide launch for the PS4 last year, we and many other markets had to wait until September 2014 to get our hands on the Xbox One. That has cost Microsoft South Africa market share with early adopters, but it means the product that launches here is more mature.

Monthly software updates this year have added in features that the Xbox One lacked at launch and fixed issues such as the poor friends and parties systems. The user experience has improved massively as a result. Microsoft has also changed its policy so that indie games developers can now self-publish on the platform. The Xbox One is slowly starting to attract the same sort of indie support as the PS4 already has.

And perhaps most significantly, Microsoft has decoupled the Xbox One and the Kinect 2.0 camera. You can still buy a unit with a Kinect in the box. Or you can also pay 20% less and do without this technically impressive but mostly unwanted appendage. The result is that Microsoft is back in the game – let’s see how its console weighs up next to Sony’s.

Next page: Specs and hardware

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11 Comments

  1. As a PC fanboy and a tech enthusiast i am acutely aware of all Microsoft’s attempts to shaft the consumer near launch in America, let’s not forget the forced kinect bundling for a start. Fortunately the south african market will not have to deal with this nonsense and enjoy all the benefits that american customers fought for.

    The fact that they launched in SA a year after the PS4 is UNFORGIVABLE.

    My vote is PS4. but i won’t buy either. If you saw my setup you would know why.

  2. You must be horrible with your money then. The console war was over once Sony hit 10 million sales.

  3. Greg Mahlknecht on

    Luckily he was ejected soon after he screwed up the XBO launch. How’s Zynga doing under his incredible leadership? 🙂

  4. Greg Mahlknecht on

    “Never attribute to malice that which is adequately explained by stupidity”… I think that pretty much explains the XBO launch. It was just a total screw-up. They’ve come back pretty strong and fixed most of the launch woes.

  5. This round of consoles just aren’t that exciting. I didn’t think I’d ever consider the PC as a gaming platform again but streaming through steam across a good home network seems to be achievable

  6. Besides for Sony and Microsoft platform exclusives, PC is the definitely a viable way to go this time around. You can build something reasonably quiet and compact for the lounge that will give you 1080P/60 frames per second for most games for not too much cost these days – a gaming PC doesn’t really need to be as big and noisy as a spaceship anymore. Steam is also just making it so cheap to play games that it’s getting silly.

  7. Greg Mahlknecht on

    I think Steam is the dark horse here. A year ago I scoffed at the Steambox – mainly because of the OS – but with Nadella seemingly wanting to give Windows away to speciality platforms, the current console generations being just PCs, and Steam Big Screen mode working well, I could certainly see a Windows Steambox coming in and making quite an impact. Both Sony and MS have stated they’re not making losses on the consoles, which means someone like ASUS could make similar hardware for a similar price.

  8. Lance, your point about price is also important. Upfront costs for your setup will vary, but paying R800 plus for a console game is getting ridiculous. I was considering trading all my games to fund a console purchase and it was embarrassing to see what I had spent on games this last generation.

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