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A Game of Influence
We caught up with Michael Pachter, a research analyst at Wedbush Morgan, to get his take on the immediate and long-term competition between Sony and Microsoft on the gaming console front. He told us the only people in the world who care who sold more consoles in September are Microsoft and Sony.
As far as the next Xbox outselling the PS4, Pachter said that’s not going to happen if the price stays at $500 for the Xbox and $400 for the PS4. If the prices are comparable -- if Xbox unbundles Kinect and sells it for $400 -- it may be a different story. But if Sony has a $100 price advantage he expects to see the PS4 sell more.
“Consumers think they are the same box and they are not going to pay $100 more for Xbox unless they are totally addicted to Xbox,” Pachter said. “The reason both companies care so much about the launch is they know that everybody that buys a box at launch is going to tell their friends their box is better.”
Pachter puts it this way: "This about how many people are the same political party as their parents. The people you respect indoctrinated you. So if your parents are Democrats, you are most likely a Democrat and if your parents are Republicans you are most likely a Republican."
Pachter said it works the same way on the console purchasing front: “If all their friends buy an Xbox they buy an Xbox. If all their friends buy a PlayStation, they buy a PlayStation.”