So finally, almost a month after Sony released their PS4 launch date, Microsoft have confirmed theres; the Xbox One will hit the shelves on November 22nd 2013.
For Microsoft, this offers a perfect symmetry, for on that day in 2005 they launched their Xbox 360 product. Eight years later, the Xbox franchise has become renowned as the gamers console of choice, and Microsoft now begin their quest to position their new console in the same way.
The November 22nd launch means that Sony will beat the Xbox One to market with their PS4 but the Xbox One will launch first in Europe. Unlike Sony, Microsoft are not staggering their release, and are instead using a unified date to build their marketing and promotional work around. For Microsoft, this equals an opportunity to build up a UK lead, but with Sony having the opportunity to do likewise in the goliath USA market, this again appears to have ended as a score draw between the two console giants.
The unified launch date does represent a gamble for Microsoft, as it opens up the distinct possibility to supply chain problems. Pre-orders with many of the leading UK retailers have already sold out, and the company are already facing a race against time to deliver the additional consoles required for the retailers to start taking pre-orders again. This is before you consider the launch period in-store and online demand, both of which can be expected to be considerable, especially considering the launch dates proximity to Christmas.
As a reminder, Sony launch their PS4 in the UK on 29th of November in the UK and the 15 November in the States. In the UK the PS4 will cost £349, which means it’s positioned significantly cheaper than the Xbox one which will cost £429. In the States, the PS4 will cost $399.
So who is likely to win the race to be the must have present under the Christmas tree in 2013?
At the moment, its proving almost impossible to say. Both of the consoles have performed stronger than expected in the pre-order market – and they were both expected to be in high-demand. After 8 years of waiting, it now seems that the market can’t wait for this launch, and both consoles will sell well as a result.
As a reminder; if you’re thinking of pre-ordering the Xbox One and you’re also a fan of the Fifa franchise, then its worth acting quick. Current pre-order stock comes with a free copy of Fifa 14, and this offer is not expected to be continued for the next batch of Xbox One pre-orders.
So which way are you leaning – Xbox One or PS4? Share your thoughts in the comments below