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Old April 29 2013, 04:21 PM   #40
Robert Maxwell
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Re: Regarding next X-Box and "always online"

Kelthaz wrote: View Post
Robert Maxwell wrote: View Post
Also, it's worth keeping these things in perspective. There was voluminous complaining about the PS3's price and using it as a BR trojan horse. In the end, it still edged out the 360, because it turns out complaints on the Internet represent only a tiny fraction of a product's total market base.
Sony utterly dominated the gaming industry with the PS1 (100m), the PS2 (150m), and dropped hard with the PS3 (77m). That's 70 million lost consumers between generations. Not to mention that within 2 years of release Sony lost all their profits from the PS2. No, I'd say those complaints were a little more mainstream then you think they were.
The main thing that crippled the PS3's adoption was its hardware. It was expensive and difficult to code for--a double whammy that hurt developer adoption and, as a result, console sales. No games, no sales. Internet complaints don't really rate, there.

Hell, the 360 still managed to move plenty of units even though it had severe manufacturing defects that, at one time, were bricking about half the consoles sold. You'd think that would be unforgivable, but nope. They still sold, and continue to sell.
Why would it be unforgivable? Microsoft spent billions to rectify their mistakes and newer models of the 360 do not have this problem. It did hurt them, but manufacturing defects are a little more acceptable today given the complicated technology.
Manufacturing defects of that scale are never "acceptable." MS corrected them, yes, but they never should have happened.

The average consumer isn't an idiot.
This is flatly untrue. The average consumer is buying one of these because their kid wants one or a friend said they should.

They will ask their more gaming-savvy friends about the new Xbox. They will read articles on NBC, and MSN bashing the always online Xbox. It won't kill the Xbox, but if you don't think it will sway consumers to purchase a PS4 instead I don't know what to tell you.
You are vastly overestimating how much pre-purchase research people do on these things. It's a few hundred bucks for a home entertainment device, not a new car. The people with the disposable income to make Sony and MS consoles commercially viable are, by and large, not doing much or any of this research. Again, those of us posting here represent a tiny, tiny sliver of the overall market. The number of people who'd actively complain might number in the five figures. Millions of people buy these.

Right, but they do care about the effects of those issues. A smaller install base due to a high price point at launch and a more complex architecture means fewer games from publishers. The PS2 had 3,857 released games. The PS3 currently has 772 games. The 360 currently has 952 games.
The PS2 is an outlier, as anyone studying console lifecycles would likely agree. Sort of like using the Nintendo DS to prove how much market capture is possible with a good handheld device. The confluence of factors that made the PS2 and the DS overwhelmingly dominant in their respective sectors simply doesn't exist anymore.

Just look at how badly the poorly thought out architecture of the Saturn hurt Sega.
This seems like a side argument and not really germane to the central topic, but the Saturn's architecture was just fine--for 2D games. Sega simply failed to see the 3D revolution coming. In Sony's case, poor predictive powers were not the issue, but the assumption that they could build complex, custom, expensive hardware, and developers would flock to it just because they flocked to the PS2. The hardware itself is superb, but it's like having the world's most advanced car, that no one knows how to drive.

What did people care about? Curiously enough, the extended PSN outage. Turns out people actually like always being connected, and get upset when they suddenly can't be, to the point of Sony giving people free stuff to placate them.
Interesting interpretation of events there. If there was mass outrage at the PSN outage, how do you think people will react if Microsoft's servers suffer a similar outage and consumers aren't even able to turn their consoles on?
XBL has had some outages, too. Obviously, there are times when that will happen. But, again, you are speculating as to what flavor of "always online" they might use. One that utterly prevents the console from functioning without an Internet connection is basically the most extreme form of such technology. It is jumping to conclusions. I have no idea how they have implemented it, if they have at all. Nor does anyone else here. Speculating about worst case scenarios might be fun, but it's not very informative.

Your average consumer wants to be more and more connected, not less. This is why I don't expect "always online" to be nearly as much of a dealbreaker as is constantly being speculated in this thread.
They want the option to be more connected, but they don't want it forced upon them.
Most people aren't going to make a distinction. They'll just punch in whatever network login data the Xbox asks for when they first turn it on, and likely never think about it again.
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