With an average consumer age of 37, video games are no longer “child’s play.” The video game industry is about to ramp up with Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE)’s PlayStation 4 and Microsoft Corporation (NASDAQ:MSFT)’s Xbox One set to be released later this year. These will be the first console releases since Nintendo released its Wii U last November. In preparation, video game producers are lining up major franchise names in hopes of capitalizing on the new consoles. In addition, companies are also innovating to make use of the rise of mobile and online gaming popularity. It’s a fierce competition, and everyone wants to be at the top of the leader board.
Clash of the titans
PlayStation 4 and Xbox One have tons of hype, but what’s the difference between the two consoles? First are the controllers. PS4 will have the Dualshock 4 controller, an upgrade from PS3’s Dualshock 3 that will have a touch pad for new game controls, a headphone jack, and can give information based on game actions. The Xbox One’s controller doesn’t have many new features, but does have force feedback to make first-person shooters more immersive.
Both consoles will also come with improved cameras. Xbox One will have the Kinect 2.0, which Microsoft has sold as a mandatory part of the Xbox One experience. It will track motion better than the first Kinect and will allow the gamer to give voice commands to the Xbox. The PS4 will also have a camera, but Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE) has not given many details on it. It will have two lenses for 3D motion capture and will be a major upgrade from the PlayStation Eye.
As far as media capabilities go, the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One are pretty even. They both feature Blu-ray players, Netflix and Hulu capabilities, and their own libraries of music and movies to rent or buy. In addition to this, the Xbox One has the capability to work with your television provider’s cable box, allowing you to watch TV through your Xbox and use its voice command capabilities.
Each new system will have its own platform-specific games. Historically I like PlayStation games such as Uncharted and Infamous more than Xbox games like Halo. Overall the Xbox One appears to have more capabilities, but each system appeals to different users depending on the gamer’s preferences.
When you look at the battle that Sony Corporation (ADR) (NYSE:SNE) and Xbox had with the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, the Xbox did not have as many features as the PlayStation. Despite that fact more game players use Xbox. This is because Xbox’s top game, Halo, is an online multiplayer game. People want to play Halo with their friends and have to have an Xbox to do so. Now that the Xbox one appears to have more features than the PlayStation 4, I expect that Microsoft will win the upcoming console war, making it a better investment.