Don't know about Xbox, but the higher your install base, the less important harware sales become compared to software sales, where the vast majority of your profits come from.
Why wouldn't they want to ride out the software sales a ~100m install base generates? Vs resetting the next generation race where they could potentially screw up big time, and end up with ~15m lifetime sales?
At some point they'll have to, in order to catch up with technology and the demands and expectations of developers and players, but if they have the ability to draw this out and just enjoy the profits, then I'm sure they'd want to do that.
Definitely makes a lot more sense for Sony than Microsoft. I think Microsoft believed their own PR for far too long ("XB1 sales are outpacing 360 sales launch-aligned."), hence why they've been so slow to prepare for the next generation.
Yeah, I'm curious how Microsoft really feel about where they are right now. 42m+ is not bad by any means, but since they reached much higher with 360, they know they have the potential for more.
And I just wanted to add to my post that maybe a failure for PS5 isn't the best example to give for why they'd want to hold off, but rather something like this.
Sony are expecting 16m this fiscal year I believe?
16m to a 100m+ install base is still going to be a lot better than say 22m to a 30m install base.
The 6m extra units in growth doesn't offset the 70m difference in install base, which should translate to a lot more software sales.
So during these periods of a consoles life, I think what makes the console manufacturers more happy is if good games come out that generate a lot of software sales.
Of course, there's also the ability to sell games on both the old and new system simultaneously, so the subject is a bit more complicated. But I think one important factor here is that both Sony and MS are probably waiting until the technology they want for their next systems is ready. If they rush it by a bit, it can end up costing them in the long run. And that may very well be the biggest motivation for MS to hang in there for another year+.
Last edited by Hiku - on 17 May 2019
Xbox One launched with the inferior DDR3 RAM, so I don't think they want to make mistakes like that again.