The console wars see new winners and losers in each round. Currently, there can be no doubt that Sony’s PS4 is the top console of the eighth generation, seeing as how it has managed to sell more than 80 million units and counting. For comparison, the Xbox One is estimated to have sold less than half that number in units, while the Nintendo Switch isn’t even in contention.
There are a number of reasons why the Xbox One fell behind the PS4. For starters, the XBox One launched with less impressive capabilities than the PS4, which has left an unforgettable stain on its reputation that it has been struggling against the entire time. However, what cemented the XBox One’s runner-up status was the choice to bundle it with the Kinect, thus raising its price by a considerable sum in exchange for no real benefit because of the failure of the feature to win over the consumers. Something that was further hammered in by the fact that the XBox One hasn’t had the same number of exclusive hits as the PS4, which made it that much more difficult for it to win over wavering individuals. On the whole, it is clear that the XBox One’s loss in the current round of the console wars can’t be blamed on a single factor but should instead be explained by a combination of them, meaning that there isn’t a simple and straightforward solution for how Microsoft could win the next round.
Is the Next Round of the Console Wars Incoming?
Speaking of which, there can be no doubt about the fact that the next round of the console wars is coming. So far, neither Microsoft nor Sony has revealed much information about the successors to the XBox One and the PS4, but we definitely know that they are being worked on at this point in time.
In the case of the successor to the XBox One, we know this because Microsoft has outright announced the existence of not one but two consoles that will coexist in the same generation. One of the two consoles will be a simpler version that will be reliant on streaming. In contrast, the other console will be something more traditional in the sense that it can handle things using local computing resources while also supporting streaming. No release date has been announced for either one of these two consoles, but there are people who believe that they will be hitting the markets in 2020 because of a rumor that was passed about.
As for the presumed PS5, Sony hasn’t actually announced that it exists, but various Sony executives have essentially stated that it is being worked on in some sense. However, its release is likely to be even further out because of Sony’s announcement that it would be skipping E3 2019, suggesting that the release of the PS5 won’t be happening until after E3 2020 at the very earliest.
Can Microsoft Win the Next Round of the Console Wars?
It remains to be seen how Microsoft will perform in the next round of the console wars. However, considering its loss in the current round, it seems safe to say that it will be spurred on to greater heights in the time to come.
More precisely, there are some more solid reasons to believe that the next XBox will be a more powerful contender. For example, XBox Game Pass has proven to be a success, meaning that Microsoft has the lead when it comes to this particular kind of subscription service. Likewise, Microsoft has snapped up a number of game studios in recent times, which have gotten to work on a number of relatively high-profile projects. As such, while XBox One might not have had a great selection of exclusive titles, it is possible that its successor will be more successful in this regard.
Having said this, it is Microsoft’s streaming efforts that might prove to be most interesting in the long run. Theoretically, if it proves to be a successful, it could upend the existing system of consoles altogether, which could be very profitable for it to say the least. Moreover, it isn’t something that other companies can replicate with ease, seeing as how the resources needed to set up the necessary infrastructure on multiple continents are a colossal investment that most companies can’t hope to match.