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Which company will update their video game console first?

  • Microsoft

    Votes: 15 22.1%
  • Nintendo

    Votes: 36 52.9%
  • Sony

    Votes: 8 11.8%
  • Don't have a clue!

    Votes: 9 13.2%
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Discussion Starter #21
Please guys, stick to the topic at hand. This thread is NOT about existing units, its about looking forward at when we might get next generation consoles.
 

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Discussion Starter #22
I find it interesting that so many people pick Nintendo. Since the bulk of Wii users are children, my thought would be that they will be the last to "require" a new box.

I would think the group most likely to clamour for the "next big thing" will be the adults and hard core gamers.
 

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Actually, the kids are getting older and are becoming a bit more discerning. They might not "require" a new box, but I bet they "want" one. Maybe it is worth having a more powerful system that is backwards compatible to keep the market that they have cornered.

NES --> SNES --> N64 --> Gamecube --> Wii --> ????

Nintendo has done something right to be the oldest system builder still standing and to lead the current gen also.

Although I think they might wait for the 3DS to lock the handheld market before they were to announce anything. After all, with the economy being the way it is I do not know if the industry can expect consumers to buy 2 systems in a year (the 3DS is not going to be just a few bucks).

Cheers
 

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Actually, the kids are getting older and are becoming a bit more discerning.
This. Kids aren't kids forever, and if you can leverage their existing brand loyalty to your brand to sell then a HD-capable console. I'm sure that would be more appealing to Nintendo than allowing their customers to "graduate" to Sony or Microsoft consoles.
 

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I think your opinion is from the point of view of the audience, most responses are from the point of view of the vendor. You're right, the Nintendo demographic doesn't care about petaflops or # of exclusives or how many consoles their brand has sold compared to the competition. Sony and MS both have rabid fanbases who yearn for the latest and greatest but from a corporate perspective a new console would be murder for both Sony and Microsoft now.
 

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Discussion Starter #26
but from a corporate perspective a new console would be murder for both Sony and Microsoft now.
Maybe but Maybe not.

I think MS could take a page out of the Apple playbook. Microsoft could quietly design and build an Xbox 720 (or whatever they might call it) that essentially used the same operating system but had a much more powerful video processor, CPU, more RAM and more HD. (think iOS which servers multiple devices)

Then at CES or E3 do a Steve Jobs, "and just one more thing" and announce that the new beast will be in stores in 60 to 90 days in limited quantities. Along with that have a few key titles (like a Halo or COD) re-engineered for 1080p or 3D to give gamers a reason to want the new console. Also make it so that accessories for the 360 also work on the 720 so gamers could move "up" without having to buy everything all over again.

Future games sold could include a 360 and 720 version, the same way you make an iPhone and iPad app.

Price it at $800 or so and let the hard core gamers rush out and buy the new box and new game. Keep the Xbox 360 selling at current prices.

I think if MS did something like that they could say they have the next gen console but also have the last gen console.
 

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Did not Atari try that with the 5200 and 7800? I do not think that worked out well for them. Not that the market is at all the same as it once was.

Even Sony took it on the chin with backwards compatibility this gen, especially due to a huge architecture shift.

I think the success of the Kinect to sell software that will dictate how MS will proceed. Also, I think the opportunity to be on the bleeding edge of the next big thing will also motivate them. After all, Sony used the PS3 in their plan to win the format war.

There are a lot of factors to consider, I just hope that when they decide to pull the trigger, the consumer wins in the end. ;)

Cheers
 

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I actually think Sony are in a close to equal position to MS do an evolution of it's console. New Cell with higher clock speed, smaller die, more spu's. Latest greatest video card, Blu-Ray. I'd be very surprised if Sony strays far from it's current architecture for it's next console unless it's still 5-6 years away.

Who knows. maybe the next console "revolution" will be virtualization and gaming as a service.
 

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From a hardware point, the next evolution will be the integration of the graphic card into the cpu. A discrete video card makes sense in a PC because it can be upgraded but in a console, they only add cost and complexity. Analysts are expecting a high performance version of AMD's FUSION to be used in the next generation of consoles.
 

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Daniel Terdiman's premise for his thesis statement is just wrong. But he needs you to believe it, or else there's no article, right?

A 5 year console cycle was never a quote truism. But if you do believe it, then how do you ignore that both Microsoft and Sony did release totally re-engineered products within the last year? The slim versions could easily have been positioned as Xbox 3.0 and PS4 with backwards compatibility. And in the past, there would have been no choice but to do that.

In the past, the Xbox 3.0 (aka Xbox Slim) and PS4 (aka PS3 Slim) would have required updated firmware to support streaming, 3D, motion controllers, etc. They would have repackaged and rebranded and resold to us on the features of these "new generation" consoles, instead of just slipstreaming them into the supply chain as has been done.

But now both have robust and pervasive network connectivity, making firmware updates a viable option that never existed before. Considering the real business is content and software sales, and the profit margins on the new consoles slim just like their names, it's obvious why they would forego the benefits of a splashy next generation release in favor of a building their perceived install base.

Something else that has extended this console war is the existence of many cross-platform games. In the past, software wrote the story. Each platform has their unique proprietary hits like Halo or Little Big Planet. But now - unlike past console wars - the vast majority of titles are simultaneously released in 2 or 3 console flavors.

There's little to drive any large leaps in video resolution beyond what these units currently provide. A 1920x1080 resolution should be sufficient for many years to come given the size and shape of living rooms and televisions. Sure, both will need to tune up to increase frame rates, provide actual 1080 line graphics instead of the common 720, and support tweaks like 3D. But it isn't like they need to quadruple resolution and frame rates any time soon. And it's the same story with sound, controls, network.

Obviously Nintento still needs to make the leap to current generation which will happen.

What will come next is extending integration into the home. The game console will become the set top box, the home computer, the media station. It already has to some extent, but I'm talking about a giant increase in this aspect. We're talking disruptive change, where people abandon their cable companies TV packages and STB's en masse and shift to getting content through their consoles instead.

Crossing the video game line is what saved Sony Playstation 3 from near death actually, just like it did when PS2 became price compelling as a DVD player. When blu-ray won the HD optical disc war, Sony chopped price and those two factors combined meant many buyers were tipped over to buying the more expensive second or third place console because of its dual purpose as a blu-ray player. Add to that Microsoft's protacted poor handling of the faulty hardware issue, and it was easy to justify $300 for the PS3 when you knew you were getting at least $200 value in the form of an HD movie player in the bargain. Strong hardware sales begat strong titles and strong titles begat software sales and PS3 now has the momentum.

Nintendo has been a surprising survivor. It's proof that price can trump features, and the hook of the motion controller let them attract a wider buying audience than just hard core gamers. I'd like to question how long it can survive, but I guess when you're profitable, survival comes easy. I could be proven wrong here, but I question how much Wii software is actually being sold. Everyone I know with Wii got it as a party accessory or kids toy and hasn't been that motivated to buy new releases on an ongoing basis. They treat it like a karaoke machine that gets pulled out occasionally but certainly not daily.

To escape that, Nintendo's console does need a refresh and more titles for grown-ups. Of course, any enhancement to the resolution will require more data space though and that means denser optical disc format and/or hard drive. So I picture an enhanced resolution Wii perhaps with a blu-ray drive. How a deal with Sony would work should be an interesting plot development. Maybe a stragetic partnership where Wii gets the drives and they join forces on a distribution network and gaming innovations? Nintendo needs a Sony's drive, and Sony would like Nintendo's install base. That may be enough to trigger a marriage. But on the other hand, Microsoft has the cash and is trigger happy. I could see them doing a deal with Nintendo for no other reason than to block any idea of a Sony-Nintendo deal.
 

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I find it interesting that so many people pick Nintendo. Since the bulk of Wii users are children, my thought would be that they will be the last to "require" a new box.
But there are new children being born all the time and when they are in JK they are ready for a console. A year ago the Wii would have been the obvious choice but that all changed with the Kinect that is ideal for young kids. If they don't respond then Wii will lose market share.
 

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Discussion Starter #34
Wayne you took my post out of context. I also said

I would think the group most likely to clamour for the "next big thing" will be the adults and hard core gamers.

I was talking about step up buyers.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
In the past, the Xbox 3.0 (aka Xbox Slim) and PS4 (aka PS3 Slim) would have required updated firmware to support streaming, 3D, motion controllers, etc. They would have repackaged and rebranded and resold to us on the features of these "new generation" consoles, instead of just slipstreaming them into the supply chain as has been done.
Firmware updates over the internet have certainly changed the console market as you essentially get a new machine with every update.

At some point though, you will need to upgrade the underlying hardware

Crossing the video game line is what saved Sony Playstation 3 from near death actually, just like it did when PS2 became price compelling as a DVD player.
Perhaps. Had they come out with a DVD version though, it would likely have shipped a year earlier at half the price which for the first two years may have dramatically changed how things evolved.

Nintendo has been a surprising survivor. It's proof that price can trump features, and the hook of the motion controller let them attract a wider buying audience than just hard core gamers.
I really disagree. When I went to the first Wii Event in Toronto, price was never discussed. People bought this machine because of its features, not its price.

What Nintendo proved was that innovation could triumph over horsepower. It took MS and Sony five years to catch on.
 

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To escape that, Nintendo's console does need a refresh and more titles for grown-ups. Of course, any enhancement to the resolution will require more data space though and that means denser optical disc format and/or hard drive. So I picture an enhanced resolution Wii perhaps with a blu-ray drive. How a deal with Sony would work should be an interesting plot development. Maybe a stragetic partnership where Wii gets the drives and they join forces on a distribution network and gaming innovations? Nintendo needs a Sony's drive, and Sony would like Nintendo's install base. That may be enough to trigger a marriage. But on the other hand, Microsoft has the cash and is trigger happy. I could see them doing a deal with Nintendo for no other reason than to block any idea of a Sony-Nintendo deal.
You have to remember that the PS1 came out of a drive project for Nintendo, either as an add-on for the SNES, or as their next-gen console, and that then left a bitter rift between the two. I don't know if it has healed though, and if it hasn't, there is likely not a real chance Nintendo can get Blu-Ray technology.

With that, they can maybe develop their own blue-laser optical system, or see if HD-DVD is available still. Another option would be to go back to solid-state, or use regular DVD for the game (or even multiple DVD set), and downloads for extra content, with a large HDD.
 

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Of course Ninendo could get Blu-Ray...it is not controlled by Sony, but rather licensed by an industry group.

But if you do believe it, then how do you ignore that both Microsoft and Sony did release totally re-engineered products within the last year? The slim versions could easily have been positioned as Xbox 3.0 and PS4 with backwards compatibility. And in the past, there would have been no choice but to do that.
It's called "value engineering", and the primary aim is to reduce cost of poor quality (in Microsofts case) or reduce product cost (in Sonys case). There was no significant platform change to speak of.
 
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