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Why the Xbox One might release after the PS4

by William Schwartz


With the PS4 release date being announced recently, and no sign of the Xbox One’s release, it’s possible that we won’t see the Xbox One hit stores until after the PS4.

It would appear that Sony’s game plan up until now has been to sit back and wait for Microsoft to share their news. They’ve then either swooped in to capitalize on Microsoft’s mistakes by announcing something better, or – according to some – modified something of their own to try and beat the competition.

There’s still debate over whether Sony actually took out the PlayStation 4 Camera from the PS4 launch to improve upon Microsoft’s price point, or removed DRM last minute to gain public approval. I’ve linked the articles from which these ‘news’ pieces originate, whether you believe these is up to you.

Putting that to one side however, the undeniable truth is that Sony has capitalized on Microsoft’s misfortune;
take E3 for example. Sony’s Press Conference was after Microsoft’s and they used their time to drum up their infamous 20 second Sharing on PS4 video. More recently, Sony have taken a jab at Microsoft for not sticking true to their core formula after multiple ‘180s’ at Gamescom.

So why the sudden change in policy? Why would they decide to lay their plans out for the public, and Microsoft to see, first? I see two main possibilities.

Does Sony know about the Xbox One’s release date?

Given what we know about Sony seemingly waiting to see Microsoft’s move and better it, surely I can’t be the only one that thinks Sony either knows, or think they know, something we don’t. Regardless of how they might know – maybe some of the press knows it but the public doesn’t or maybe a disgruntled Xbox developer let it slip, who knows? – it doesn’t seem too far fetched, does it?

On the other hand, given Microsoft’s recent problems with delivering to 8 of their 21 markets, maybe Sony have estimated that the Xbox One couldn’t possibly arrive before the PS4. Just because they don’t have a definitive date for the Xbox One release date, doesn’t mean they aren’t releasing the PS4 on November 15th in North America and 29th elsewhere because they think they have better news to share than Microsoft. The alternative is a big risk.

Does Sony not care about the Xbox One’s release date?

There’s a possibility that maybe Sony doesn’t care about when the Xbox One will be released. This seems very risky, as it give Microsoft the opportunity to undercut Sony. Assuming they can handle the shipping, Microsoft may now move their release date forward, if it wasn’t already before the PS4’s.

This, of course, doesn’t necessarily portray Sony in an arrogant light. It’s entirely likely that Sony laid out a plan of action and have stuck to it, regardless of what Microsoft do. I’m sure lots of people will think this in fact the case, and its easy to see why. Sony have had the lion’s share of public appreciation with their console, and by this stage, they probably don’t need to worry about when the PS4 releases in comparison to the Xbox One.

Which of these possibilities sounds most likely to you? When do you think the Xbox One will be released? Leave a comment with your opinion.

- This article was updated on:November 17th, 2013

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