Video game consoles are expensive. Regardless of how you look at it, buying any console these days can be a significant investment. Fortunately, the amount people have to spend on modern gaming platforms will not increase anytime soon.
Sony announced that the PlayStation 5 will be cheaper in several key markets this week. Although current worldwide economic challenges and supply issues are the major contributing factors for this challenging decision, even these difficult times do not explain why this unprecedented decision was made by many gamers.
Phil Spencer, the CEO of Microsoft Gaming, appeared on CNBC recently and shared his thoughts on the current gaming market. For instance, coming off the Tokyo Game Show, Spencer said he was happy with how much Microsoft had expanded and collaborated with foreign studios. Naturally, though, one of the hosts asked the question that was on everyone's minds: Would Sony's recent PlayStation 5 pricing hike affect the cost of Xbox consoles?
Spencer initially said that Microsoft carefully considers its business model and that we should never say never about a possible price rise in the future, for the time being, Xbox Series X and S prices will remain as they are. Ironically, Sony explained why it was raising console prices, citing the same hard economic conditions.
Spencer warned that increasing the price of Xbox consoles might sabotage the company's reputation in a market that had previously been utterly hostile to previous Xbox consoles. But thats not all. Microsoft's best interests may be at risk in the long run since the budget console finally allowed Microsoft to raise its Xbox Series S price.
Spencers announcement is a major surprise, but it shouldn't come as a surprise. After all, during the Epic v. Apple trial, we learned that Xbox sells consoles at a loss (via Protocol), and then makes up for it with subscription services, as well as game sales. Since Microsoft has already announced that it wouldn't increase the cost of a Switch either, the Xbox team probably doesn't want to follow Sonys lead.
When you think about it, Microsofts decision demonstrates that the company is learning from its mistakes as well as those made by its competitors. Until now, the Xbox One was the most costly console, mostly because early versions of the hardware were bundled with the Kinect. For theforeseeable future, the Xbox Series hardware line will be the most affordable option for many gamers across the globe simply because Microsoft does not want to spike console prices.