As you can imagine, during E3 there was a surge of pre-order activity at retailers. The biggest two contenders obviously were the Xbox One and the PS4. Recent figures from major online retailers in the United States have suggested that for every three Playstation 4 unit only two Xbox One’s are ordered. This information was compiled between the Monday the 10th of June and Wednesday the 12th of June.
This doesn’t come as a surprise after the initial reaction at E3. Many feel that Microsoft are imposing too many restrictions and features that consumers simply do not want. These concerns largely revolve around the need to be online once a day to enable games to work, an always on Kinect that comes bundled with the Xbox One that you don’t actually need to operate the system and the lack of transparency as to whether pre-owned games will work on the console (we have been assured they will work but nobody seems to know how). All of these issues and a lack of response from Microsoft seem to be doing more harm than good in the initial race to be number one for Christmas.
A poll by IGN asked “who readers thought was winning E3.” The results were a landslide and showed that momentum is fully with Sony as out of 280,000 IGN readers 81% voted for Sony and Microsoft scraped up only 12% of the vote. This sentiment was further strengthened as UK Retailer Blockbuster recently announced that “In the wake of Xbox One’s record-breaking pre-order success at Blockbuster last month, the PS4 has received the same incredibly positive reaction, proving that the gaming industry is booming.”
Microsoft did have some good news before E3 as Amazon announced that the Xbox One had roughly 2.4% more pre-orders than the PS4. Amazon’s Xavier Garambois also revealed that the Xbox One pre-orders are even outselling those for the Xbox 360 when it originally launched. This initial flux can only mean good things for both companies.
In light of all these figures Microsoft still haven’t answered consumers concerns but Phil Spencer stated “this isn’t a sprint. The platform launches this November; we’ve got more content to share.”
For Microsoft’s sake you would have to hope this “content” is a major game changer. Because despite many initial pre-orders from the ever faithful Microsoft’s biggest concern is converting those still sat on the fence. But November is a long way a way in the race for Christmas number 1.
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