I wouldn't hazard a guess as to the size of this potential audience, but I'm one of them to be sure.
I wonder though, if having a super-premium enthusiast model for a console, would engender a sense of frustration among those who have the vanilla version. I think there's something to be said about maintaining a state of equalibrium among a fan base.
There are pluses and minuses to both single unit and a multi tiered launch. It all partially depends on what MS is going to do. They say no more lower tier next gen console, but MS literally does the opposite of what their saying within days sometimes now, so. If both do it, it will just become the new norm, aside from unexpectedly low sales for one model over the years.
To make this specific enthusiast model really work, I think in a two model launch, you need pricing more like $399 and $749 for consoles. This way you won't have many early adopters upset that they can't afford either. That scenario would likely cause a lot of outrage and wouldn't be good PR for PS, especially that early on.
At $399, you get a very similar reaction to PS4's price unveiling. $749 will be enough that most $499 gamers and under won't really care as long as the $399 model is basically another upgrade over PS4 Pro, or better, with a few worthy additions. The $599 and $699 gamers will be the ones who need to decide what they want to do, but they aren't that big a crowd so they shouldn't make too much noise even if some of them aren't happy about the enthusiast model pricing.
This also would help to keep the performance gap closer. The larger the performance gap, the larger the concerns when it comes to how devs will handle that with their games. At the same time, the performance gap has to be high enough to be considered enthusiast worthy. $750 should be enough for most. The enthusiast model also doesn't have to be all performance extra's. There's plenty of media related items and more that can be added in, that your typical gamer isn't going to care about in the $399 model.
If MS were to launch just one $499 model, because I can't see them going higher and lower is highly unlikely if it's going to be a monster eater, yet PS launches two like stated here, as long as they can control and handle the proper implementation when it comes to the games, XB1 will look like a strong launch in comparison to how Scarlett fares.
I tend to think PS would try and go with a $399 and $599 approach if they were going to launch two reasonably different models, but it's hard to say whether they would take the chance on two regardless, other than storage space possibly. For me, two different performance models would be intriguing nonetheless.Last edited by EricHiggin - on 23 September 2019