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Is Microsoft Corporation (MSFT) Making a $499 Mistake?

We now have a price and a release month for Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)‘s Xbox One.

On the eve of E3, the software giant let gamers know that the next-generation console will be available come November at a $499 price point.

Microsoft Corporation (MSFT)

We knew that it wasn’t going to be cheap given the impressive specs that Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) unveiled last month, but since Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE) followed up last night by pricing its upcoming PS4 at just $399 it’s going to create some unwelcome comparisons.

Sure, there’s more to a console than pricing.

Nintendo Co., Ltd (OTCBB:NTDOY) thought it would get a jump on the competition by rolling out the Wii U starting at just $299 this past holiday season.

It flopped. Nintendo Co., Ltd (PINK:NTDOY) had to scale back its initial unit sales projections, and the future for Nintendo’s ambitious dual-screen system doesn’t seem so bright as E3 aims to get die-hard gamers excited about upcoming games and gear.

There’s nothing worse than a slow start when years separate console generations, and now Nintendo Co., Ltd (PINK:NTDOY)’s paying the price. Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ:EA) wowed the gaming community by announcing 11 upcoming games last night. They’ll be made for the Xbox One. They’ll be made for the PS4. There were no announced titles for the Wii U.

The flop this past November has left Nintendo Co., Ltd (PINK:NTDOY) at the mercy of its in-house games, which thankfully is the Japanese gaming pioneer’s strong suit. What happens if the Xbox One is a flop this November? How long will EA keep putting out Xbox One games if no one buys into the system?

Failure doesn’t seem feasible, especially since the Xbox 360 has been this country’s best selling system. However, the PS2 was the hot console until Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE)’s PS3 hit the market for $100 more than the Xbox 360 and a lot more than the original Wii. Could Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT) price itself out of market leadership?