I just saw an article on Edge saying the Microsoft are testing a build of IE9 for the Xbox 360. This lead me to think, maybe Microsoft’s home media hub strategy is working quite well. The infiltrated our homes as a pure gaming device, not having spent much on making the console a media centre apart from video playback from (DVD and DivX) and music playback.
Keeping things simple at the start meant that the X-Box 360 was (and still is) substantially cheaper than it’s Rival the PS3, which meant it got higher market saturation. Now that they have built up a large install base they have started adding features like Streaming Video and now a browser.
Compare and contrast this with Sony’s strategy of releasing a super expensive console with everything built into it, by gradually adding features Microsoft have sneakily put a media hub into the homes of gamers, and can now negotiate better deals with content providers as they have a large install base.
I own both a 360 and a PS3 and I’ll admit that the only thing I use the PS3 for it media playback (And playing Final Fantasy XIII, but that’s a different story, I initially bought the console because FF13 wasn’t going to coming out on the 360).
Now the X-Box Costs so little and Microsoft are even talking about releasing it as a subscription service ($99 for the console with a 24 month contract), it will probably live on past the release of the next version of the X-Box and continue making them money as a media hub for people who use it to consume media rather than just play games. Then when people upgrade they can take whatever media features they want with them, I doubt MS will reduce the feature set with the Next-Box 360 they’ve already got the licensing agreements, and a revenue stream.
I think it’s possible that Microsoft and Sony had a Tortoise/Hare race going with this generation of the console war, and it’s looking like Microsoft’s Tortoise strategy has has beaten Sony’s Hare brained plans…
Tags: Content Providers, Different Story, Final Fantasy XIII, Gaming Device, Ie9, Licensing Agreements, Market Saturation, Media Features, Media Hub, Media Playback, Music Playback, Play Games, PS3, Revenue Stream, Subscription Service, Tortoise, Video Playback, X Box, X-Box 360, Xbox 360