Wishful thinking. MS has shown that their future lies in streaming. They want a powerful console, but they aren't going to go all to beat Sony by any significant margin. At best, they will be within 10%-15% of each other, with a chance Sony is on top. 40%-50% is something to tout. 10%-15% won't make enough of a difference to the eye. Especially not when Sony's 1st party studios are HW magicians, getting every last drop of power out of their consoles.
More importantly, I doubt MS is going to want to subsidize the Scarlett like Sony will the PS5. The XBO pricing already proves this. They could have launched at $399, w/ Kinect if they wanted to subsidize the HW and take on the PS4. Instead they launched at $499. Same goes for the X. They could have subsidized it and launched at $399, to take on the Pro. Instead, $499, again. We may even see the same $399 vs $499, again, next gen.
It's just the secret sauce all over, again.
Subsidizing is only truly effective when you do it early gen. It takes alot of extra accessory, subscription, and software sales to recoup what you lose when you subsidize a console. Phil was not head of Xbox early this gen when XB1 released, Don Mattrick was. Mattrick made the decision not to subsidize XB1 on launch, not Phil. By the time Phil was head and XB1 X was getting ready to release, it was too late for subsidizing it to have any significant effect, all it would have done is lose them money on hardware sales in exchange for a small increase in userbase. Phil decided that this gen was basically already a lost cause, and that it would be better to focus on profitability over userbase size for the remainder of the generation.
This does not however mean that Phil will do the same thing with Scarlett that he did with X. A new gen is a chance for a fresh start for Xbox, and since subsidizing is most effective when done at the beginning of a gen, he may very will choose to take the fight to Sony by subsidizing a more powerful system to aim for price parity with PS5.
Now do I think that we will see a 40-50% more powerful console? Not a chance. Maybe 15-25% more powerful for the same price as PS5 would be my expectation if that is Phil's plan. Will there be a meaningful graphical difference on most games? Probably not, but you will see slightly higher resolution and/or framerate on many 3rd party games and maybe a few other graphical differences, kind of like PS4 vs XB1 or XB1 X vs PS4 Pro.
Last edited by shikamaru317 - on 30 November 2019