Xbox 360 outsells PS3 in Japan
Sony's foundations rocked?
The Xbox 360’s Japenese sales figures have finally overtaken those of the Sony PlayStation 3 - by a margin of just 239 consoles, according to market watcher Media Create.
Figures from the company show that 17,673 Xbox 360s were sold during the seven days up to 4 November. Some 17,434 Sony PS3 consoles were in the same time.
It’s difficult to say exactly what caused this sudden Xbox 360 sales ‘surge’. However, Microsoft has just cut the Core's model’s cost to ¥27,800 (£120/€172/$244) and the Standard edition’s price tag to ¥34,800 (£150/€215/$306), with effect from 1 November.
The 360 has been growing its month-on-month sales figures in Japan of late, while both the PS3 and Nintendo's Wii have experienced declining sales.
Re: Sony's dead?
Great post and I do agree with the broad strokes of what you wrote. I read that Sony is in the process of releasing a massive amount of games for the PS3. I do not know if these will be unique to the console, but just getting more options for consumers should help the console.
Sony’s treatment of European customers is unfortunate. The company still has a great image in the US. We are used to them pushing proprietary technology and sometimes it fails. Beta is an overused example of this. It is not always a winning philosophy to drive new technology and even if it is successful (ex: MemoryStick licensed to SanDisk and Lexar), it can still be limited by the fact that the core technology is controlled by one company.
Re: Sony's dead?
Some good points there. However, I am not sure what you mean by 'credit the posters here for not forgetting about the effect Halo 3 had on console sales'.
The very reason Microsoft took on Bungie as an in-house developer was to release a 'killer app', a must-have game that makes the punters want to buy their console. I guess my point is that surely the high sales of Halo 3 and associated console sales shouldn't make any difference to people's perceptions of the sales figures. At the end of the day, where do you draw the line?:
- '...ah - I see 360 sales are up...'
- '...yes - but don't forget thats only because a lot of consoles and games were sold this month...'
Vaguely ridiculous, I think you'll agree.
The interesting thing is that whilst Halo 3 has had an effect on console sales, there are so many high quality games on the market at present for 360, I don't think that Halo 3 is the sole reason why console sales have increased. There are platform exclusives, like Halo 3 and Bioshock, but also a few other releases that are out now for 360 but not yet for PS3, such as the Orange Box. Factor in the fact that a lot of the current releases for PS3 are also out on 360, (Call of Duty 4, Assassins Creed, etc), and I think you have the reason why the 360 is doing well.
Quite simply, it offers a wide variety of good quality games, which are usually £10.00 cheaper than a near identical PS3 version, and are not games that have a gimmick programmed in as an afterthought where you wave a controller about, (i.e. quite a few Wii games). Don't get me wrong - I really like the Wii, but everyone I know that owns one has had the initial period where they play it constantly. But then they realise quite a few of the games have no real depth and get bored quite soon afterward.
Although I own a 360 and have taken the stance that I will not buy a PS3 due to the poor manner with which Sony has treated its European customers, I do not doubt that the PS3 is a good piece of kit. However, I do feel it is overpriced for what it offers, (especially the neutered 40gb model), and I don't want to have a Blu-Ray player forced upon me. If I want one, I'll buy a standalone player - same for HD-DVD. I'm only about half way through the arduous and expensive task of replacing my favourite VHS movies with DVDs and have no intention of replacing them yet again at even more expense.
I do think that the strategy of building PS3s with Blu-Ray players is a risky one and gambles a lot on the gamers who buy the PS3 also buying into the whole 'hey - lets replace every DVD I own' idea - in addition to spending their hard earned cash on gaming. After all, Sony pushed the UMD on PSP owners when cartridges or memory sticks would have been a viable alternative and look what happened to that...
Did Sony release the PS3 in hopes of placing a console in every household?
Did Sony release the PS3 to provide gamers with the highest quality gaming experience and forward the adoption of Blu-Ray?
Believing the former would explain the posts applauding Sony’s “collapse.” Accepting this notion that Sony’s products are wholesale crap only displays what I assume is a blind bias against this resurging market leader. That is unfortunate since that bias is based on what must be a short-term view of the consumer electronics industry. More on this later…
If you accept the later (PS3 exists to push Blu-Ray and HD gaming), then the product is a great success. Households that buy the Wii do not decide HD-DVD vs. Blu-Ray. Households that buy the PS3 do. That is what is most important to Sony. Taking a short-term loss on a bunch of consoles is overshadowed by what is at stake in the battle for the future of the DVD.
As for XBOX, it has a more attractive price point that the PS3. It also provides for a somewhat comparable gaming experience. Call it a toss up if you wish, but Sony and Microsoft have taken losses on console sales. The only difference is Sony does it to ensure the success of Blu-Ray and Microsoft does it just to get a foothold in the market. Which strategy comes with the biggest long-term reward?
...back to Sony as a whole. Sony stumbled when it turned away from electronics and focused on content (ex: Sony Pictures). A change of leadership has seen the company turn away from this error and return to their roots. A great example of the turn was the XBR line of televisions followed by their SXRD product that competes with TI’s DLP. There is still a lot of work to do, but let us not forget that Nintendo was pronounced dead multiple times over the past decade. The difference is that Sony’s console business is a drop in the bucket while Nintendo’s consoles are always an “eggs in one basket” gamble.
On a final note, credit the posters here for not forgetting about the effect Halo 3 had on console sales.