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Xbox One and PS4 policies unlikely to be clarified at E3

by William Schwartz

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For many gamers it’s not a question of if we want new consoles from Sony and Microsoft, it’s pretty much a given that we do. Better graphics and gameplay experiences are certainly things that we crave, but the upcoming generation has a cost associated with them. That cost is the perceived change in the way that we consume these products. Rumors about used game policies, always online connections, digital rights management, and price of the new hardware have been at the forefront of the discussion about the Xbox One and PlayStation 4.

With E3 on the horizon, many are looking for answers to these questions, alongside a showing of what’s possible on the new hardware from a gaming standpoint. Don’t get too excited though, analysts are predicting that both Microsoft and Sony will leave the hard questions for a later date. According to investor notes transcribed by Games Industry, Microsoft and Sony are unlikely to share any answers to these questions.

According to Doug Cruetz, analyst at Cowen and Company: “We doubt either Microsoft or Sony will address pricing for current- or next-gen consoles at E3, though we do think there is a chance that Nintendo could announce a (badly needed, in our opinion) price cut for the Wii U in an attempt to steal some thunder,” Creutz explained. “We also don’t expect to hear any official word on what the used-game policy will be on next-gen consoles.”

Microsoft recently cancelled their roundtable meetings with journalists following their E3 press conference, perhaps it was an early sign that they aren’t quite ready to talk about their plans for the next-generation when it comes to the hot button issues. E3 2013 will be a time for Microsoft to demonstrate the gaming potential of the Xbox One, something that the company failed to address in their initial reveal of the console last month. While Sony has been more forthcoming about their plans for these aspects of the console, their strategy is also yet to be laid bare.

Despite the large stage and opportunity to explain, it’s beginning to look like E3 will come and go without any real details about these new policies from either Sony or Microsoft.

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