Forums - Gaming Discussion - What does research and development for a console actually consist of?

Is it a bunch of engineers and dudes in suits discussing what goes into the next console? Is it testing different components and versions of components and different ombinations of components? computer models? physical models?

I say it a lot, I hear it a lot, but really I'm not so sure I know what it is. I assume the above... is that basically the extent of it? Mostly I'm interested in where the costs associated with it come from, and why they can be so astronomical. 

Thanks in advance.



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well it starts off with research and then they do some development

Bet With Zero: He says WiiU and XB1 gap will be higher than 1.9M by end of 2014, i say it will grow smaller or vanish. 

Bet with Pezus: i win if Watch dogs sells more on PS3+360  than on next gen PS4 + Xbox One. winner gets 1 month sig control

Bet With JoeTheBro: He says WiiU in Jan 2013 > XB1 Jan 2014, i say the opposite.

bananaking21 said:
well it starts off with research and then they do some development

/thread

thanks. think we should wrap it up here then. 



I am thinking many prototypes with different specs. Trying to find new input devices (wiimote, wii u pad, kinect, move, sixaxis). Getting inputs from in house and outside developers. Architecture of online store and other functionalists. Finally testing it enough to the point that it doesn't blow up.

Edit: Costs would be high paid engineers, material costs of prototypes, reseraching cell and in hour propreitary technology costed a lot. Thus Sony is rumoured to go for off market components for PS4. 



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Andrespetmonkey said:
bananaking21 said:
well it starts off with research and then they do some development

/thread

thanks. think we should wrap it up here then. 

pretty much yeah. though i would like to ask a favor, next time you make a thread dont ask us to explain something so long and complicated



Bet With Zero: He says WiiU and XB1 gap will be higher than 1.9M by end of 2014, i say it will grow smaller or vanish. 

Bet with Pezus: i win if Watch dogs sells more on PS3+360  than on next gen PS4 + Xbox One. winner gets 1 month sig control

Bet With JoeTheBro: He says WiiU in Jan 2013 > XB1 Jan 2014, i say the opposite.

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bananaking21 said:
Andrespetmonkey said:
bananaking21 said:
well it starts off with research and then they do some development

/thread

thanks. think we should wrap it up here then. 

pretty much yeah. though i would like to ask a favor, next time you make a thread dont ask us to explain something so long and complicated

Why not. I think it is a great thread. Certainly 100 times more interesting than arguing over xbla/psn/steam imo.



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green_sky said:
bananaking21 said:
Andrespetmonkey said:
bananaking21 said:
well it starts off with research and then they do some development

/thread

thanks. think we should wrap it up here then. 

pretty much yeah. though i would like to ask a favor, next time you make a thread dont ask us to explain something so long and complicated

Why not. I think it is a great thread. Certainly 100 times more interesting than arguing over xbla/psn/steam imo.


you killed the joke :( 



Bet With Zero: He says WiiU and XB1 gap will be higher than 1.9M by end of 2014, i say it will grow smaller or vanish. 

Bet with Pezus: i win if Watch dogs sells more on PS3+360  than on next gen PS4 + Xbox One. winner gets 1 month sig control

Bet With JoeTheBro: He says WiiU in Jan 2013 > XB1 Jan 2014, i say the opposite.

bananaking21 said:
green_sky said:

Why not. I think it is a great thread. Certainly 100 times more interesting than arguing over xbla/psn/steam imo.

you killed the joke :( 

Sorry. I am buzz kill sometimes

And we deretailed the topic. Hopefully it gets more hits from people who study hardware engineering. 



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There are probably over a hundred different component suppliers for a console, and each one is competitively bid upon so needs to be prototyped and tested. The more advanced components won't even exist yet when the process is begun so you have to work with simulations and promises.

Then they design how the components will fit together on the board and connect to the case and external ports etc

Then they need to choose which OEMs will build the thing and how their production line will be set up to receive each of the parts and integrate them, while having the thing cost only a few hundred dollars per unit.

The longest part is validation. You have a hacked together working board in the lab, but now you've got to make it mass producible, with a 99.99%+ pass rate for every one of a hundred components in their new environment (space, heat, power, electrical susceptibility) so that the vast majority of consoles coming off the production line work for 5+ years in possibly terrible conditions (cramped in a corner with no ventilation).

Not spending enough time (a year plus) on validation between on-paper 'final' hardware and first production is what gave us RROD.

What takes the most time overall is getting a hundred companies with completely different processes, ideas and expectations to work together across time zones.

Source: Dad works in a similar high-tech industry with the same process.

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I would think it would have to do alot with consumer surveys. See what direction the consumer is wanting to go into.

Eat my shorts