Are the PS4 and Xbox One priced too high? (spoiler: no)

The prices of the PS4 and Xbox One (especially Microsoft’s upcoming console) have been under heavy debate by gamers and the press alike. The Xbox One is US$499, the PS4 is US$399 and Forbes is calling this “[Sony’s] one main advantage” as both machines are comparatively similar. Arstechnia takes it one step further though and historically compares the prices of Sony and Microsoft’s last machines, plus most other major consoles.


Green is launch price, orange is price adjusted for inflation

Arstechnica used an inflation calculator from the US-based Department of Labor Statistics and archived sales data to calculate the above chart.

Here’s what’s most interesting: the Xbox 360 and PS3 are barely US$100 higher than both their original launch prices. The Xbox 360 was US$400 at launch, and would have cost US$476 today. The PS3 was US$600 (which seemed nuts) and today would launch at US$696, which made it the expensive system to beat back in 2006. Based on these adjusted prices, we’re paying Xbox 360 prices for the PS4 and Neo-Geo prices for the Xbox One. For those unfamiliar with the Neo-Geo, it was a cartridge-based system that was roughly the size of a small horse that played arcade perfect games, which for 1991 was pretty special indeed.

What the Xbox One has though, that the Neo Geo did not, is mass appeal. Well over two decades ago, the Neo Geo was seen as a Fabergé Egg, a special but highly expensive curio that few could afford but looked great on the shelf. Unlike the Neo-Geo, The Xbox One is going to land in millions of homes, just like the PS4 which only costs US$400 because it opted to not include the new PlayStation Camera as default, according to IGN and almost everyone else, ever.

In terms of price cuts, don’t hold your breath for too long, as the Xbox 360 took three years to make it to US$199 for its el-cheapo model, the Xbox 360 Arcade (no hard drive) and almost six years for the PS3 to make it to US$288, the cheapest price currently for Sony’s current console.

Ultimately, and while the prices may shock for now, the new consoles are fairly priced and most complaints will be quickly forgotten when both console makers lower the prices over the coming years.

Images via

Steven Norris: grumpy curmudgeon


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