On February 20th, 2013 Sony took the initiative and unveiled the long-awaited PlayStation 4 before Microsoft could release the next Xbox, the Xbox 720. This has started buzz amongst both Xbox and PlayStation enthusiasts who have eagerly waited nearly a decade for the next console.
Both titan giants in the console video-gaming industry have similar target segments, thus they need to differentiate themselves in both functionality, and first-party games. Price point is also important, which Sony failed to understand with their launch of the PlayStation 3 that retailed at $599, while the Xbox 360 retailed at a much more competitive price of $399.
Sony has renovated the social networking aspect of gaming; allowing layers to broadcast their gameplay in real time to others, as well as enabling the recording of plays and the upload of these in order to send them to others. Furthermore, the feature of remote access allows players to virtually take control of a friend’s screen, further improving the social ability of gaming.
Moreover, Sony promises “Instant On,” which allows players to shut down the PlayStation 4 during a game and boot up within seconds, right where the player left off. This eliminates the waiting time of approximately 60 seconds present in this generation of consoles.
Sony has finally set the bar for the next generation of consoles, now the ball is in Microsoft’s court to respond with the Xbox 720. Microsoft was originally planning on unveiling the Xbox 720 during E3 in June, but in response to Sony’s PlayStation 4 they moved up the reveal to April. Will Microsoft raise the bar for the next generation of consoles? I guess we’ll see come April.