Friday, December 20, 2013

Xbox one, Wii U, PS4: Who will be the champion in the gaming world?

Video Gaming Systems for the Holidays
by Mary Faller

The holiday season brings joy to families, presents underneath the Christmas tree, and sales to stores all over the country. Black Friday has been a tradition for many families over the years as new and improved gadgets, toys, and electronics are introduced at discounted prices. 

Each year consumers head into the shopping trenches to pick up the trending item of the season. This year, it has been a debate as to which gaming console would be the top 
contender in the fight to win over the electronics market.

Xbox One

The Xbox One boasts cutting edge technology that grows with the owner. This improved gaming console features an 8-core x86 processor that lets players switch between a current game and another entertainment application, such as Netflix, seamlessly. It also has larger memory capacity with 8 gigabytes of Random Access Memory (RAM) and a 500 gigabyte hard drive to store more game progression, demos, movies, music, etc. The Xbox One also allows consumers to watch movies and play games with better quality through its integral Blu-ray player. The retail price for Microsoft’s Xbox One is $499.99, and experts believe this price will not drop until 2015.

Microsoft reported that after only three weeks on the market, the Xbox One has sold just under 2 million units, generating $1.8 billion. According to an interview with CNBC, John Love , director of video games at, reported that, “Demand for Next-generation gaming continues to be very strong. At peak demand, customers were ordering the Xbox One console at over 1,000 units per minute.” It is projected that Microsoft will sell over 3 million units by the year end.


The second contender in the war between gaming consoles is the PlayStation 4. It was projected that the PS4 would notably sell more units for the simple fact that it was cheaper in price. The retail price for the PS4 is $399.99. After several weeks on the market, Sony reported that 2.1 million PS4 units had been sold, bringing the PS4 into the lead. The PlayStation 4 features an 8 gigabyte internal memory and Bluetooth technology. Sony boasts that the PlayStation 4 has the “power to perform” with a system that is projected to deliver new game play experiences that have not been introduced in earlier models. Sony reports that the newly developed 100+ games feature high-fidelity graphics that allow gamers to get lost in the game.

The controller has been reinvented as well to maintain the same charm as its old layout, but with improved innovations such as the new touchpad feature. It is projected that the PS4 will reach well over 4 million units sold by the end of this year. According to Forbes Magazine, in a report from ABI Research, “ABI predicts that the combined sales of the Wii U, Xbox One and PS4 will total 133 million over the next five years, a 5% decline from the first five years of the last console generation which sold 140 million units of the 360, PS3 and Wii.” 
Wii U

The Nintendo Wii U, although introduced before the other two gaming consoles, remains a top contender, but only due to its length of time spent on electronics store shelves and its low retail price. Nintendo offered a free game with purchase at an introductory retail price of $299. A deluxe version was also introduced at an increased retail price of $349. The regular version comes standard with the console, controller, AC adapter, high speed HDMI cable and a sensor bar. The deluxe version features all of the original equipment but offers more memory, and includes stands and charging cradles for the controller.

The Wii U features a touchscreen controller that appears to be an easier interface for all age groups. The Wii U is more family friendly and would not bode well for intense shooting games or zombie killing sprees like the Xbox One or PS4. The Wii U is also more affordable, making this gaming console a more modest holiday purchase. When Nintendo introduced the Wii, it showed consumers of all ages that they could join in the gaming revolution. Nintendo offered a use-your-body-as-the-controller attitude that got families up out of the couches and playing together. The Wii U remains this type of controller system but with improved features, making it a continued champion in households all over the country. Nintendo reported that at the end of October, the Wii U sold 3.91 million units. The lower price and family friendly, “E” for everyone reputation, has boosted Nintendo into the lead of the gaming console debate.

All in all, the consumer will flock toward the console that best fits their needs and all three contenders feature a number of attractive qualities for every age group and gamer personality. It is impossible to determine which console will remain the front runner as these products continue to evolve and rejuvenate every couple of years. With smartphones and tablet computers now offering gaming capabilities to consumers on the go, the gaming console market may be affected. For years, these battles between new and improved technology have made champion innovative products and left the losers collecting dust. As technology continues to improve and gaming consoles continually morph into improved products, these three top contenders will eventually fall into the infamy that is the Atari, Nintendo, and Sega Genesis.

“Xbox One, PlayStation 4 Sales total $1.8B First Three Weeks,”, December 11, 2013.
“Which Console to Buy: Wii U, Xbox One or PlayStation 4,”, December 12, 2013.
“Analyst Believes the PS4, Xbox One and Wii U Won’t Match Their Predecessor’s Sales,”, July 17, 2013. 

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