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Consumers Prefer PS4 Over Xbox One for Holidays, Poll Finds

By - Source: Tom's Guide US | B 30 comments
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Although Microsoft has abandoned most of the features and policies that gamers hated about the Xbox One, the next-generation home gaming console still faces an uphill struggle to compete against Sony's equally new PlayStation 4.

A new Reuters survey revealed that consumers are considerably more interested in Sony's new system than in Microsoft's — especially younger consumers.

Reuters collected data from 1,297 people via an online survey to gauge their interest in buying either an Xbox One or a PS4 this coming holiday season (both consoles will be released in North America in November).  To be fair, not many people were interested in picking up a PS4 — only 26 percent (64 percent of consumers did not want a new console at all).

If interest in the PS4 was mild, though, interest in the Xbox One was positively anemic: Only 15 percent of respondents intended to buy one.

MORE: PS4 vs. Xbox One: Console Comparison

The data was even more telling when considering consumers under the age of 40. Out of 408 young people surveyed, 41 percent said they wanted a PS4 in November. Only 27 percent want the Xbox One.

Sales, not surveys, are the final arbiter of a product's success, but the numbers are still telling. Surveys that query more than 1,000 random people tend to be indicative of the general public's perceptions (as long as the sample population is truly random), and Reuters is a large enough organization to get Web traffic from a broad swath of the American public.

Although consumers initially greeted the PS4 with only mild interest, the reveal of Microsoft's Xbox One in May — which highlighted the device as a media streaming box rather than as a dedicated gaming machine — unwittingly endeared gamers to Sony's black box.

The two companies' presentations at the Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) in June reinforced those perceptions. While the Xbox One event paraded an endless stream of (admittedly very polished) shooters, the PS4 conference showed an enormous variety of game genres, and reaffirmed that streaming video and music to the PS4 would be free. (The Xbox One requires a $60-per-year subscription fee to access streaming services.)

At E3, consumers also learned that the PS4 would cost $400, whereas the Xbox One would retail for $500, due to its nonoptional Kinect motion-sensing peripheral, which cannot be turned off. The Xbox One was also going to restrict the sharing of games among friends and the playing of used games; the PS4 would not.

Although Microsoft eventually modified some of its more controversial positions on used games, sharing and the Kinect camera, the damage had already been done: The PS4 was easily the more popular choice among gamers.

Now, it seems, the PS4 is the preferred system among the general populace as well.

That said, most consumers are not very excited about buying any kind of new console this year. A full 64 percent of those surveyed by Reuters had no plans to invest in any kind of new hardware, be it a PS4, a Nintendo 2DS or a Steam machine.

No system, however, made out quite as badly in the survey as Nintendo's Wii U. Only 3 percent of respondents had ever played a game on one.

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Top Comments
  • 12 Hide
    Joseph Leal , September 30, 2013 10:31 AM
    Wait, so if I'm reading this right, only 408 of the total 1297 people surveyed were under 40? So how is this poll even relevant.....
Other Comments
  • 3 Hide
    Amdlova , September 30, 2013 10:29 AM
    A full 64 percent of those surveyed by Reuters had no plans to invest in any kind of new hardware, be it a PS4, a Nintendo 2DS or a Steam machine. (new nintendo 2DS ) or 3DS?
  • 0 Hide
    Amdlova , September 30, 2013 10:29 AM
    A full 64 percent of those surveyed by Reuters had no plans to invest in any kind of new hardware, be it a PS4, a Nintendo 2DS or a Steam machine. (new nintendo 2DS ) or 3DS?
  • Display all 30 comments.
  • -6 Hide
    ssdpro , September 30, 2013 10:31 AM
    One other big reason: between the PS3 and the XBOX 360 the PS3 was the system that fit a more mature lifestyle. It could play blu-ray discs and had a more professional menu system. That culture has grown over time and the result is poll outcomes like this.

    Other thought: Considering Windows 8's modest adoption... how would you like to have that rotten sore migrate to your console too?
  • 12 Hide
    Joseph Leal , September 30, 2013 10:31 AM
    Wait, so if I'm reading this right, only 408 of the total 1297 people surveyed were under 40? So how is this poll even relevant.....
  • -1 Hide
    jhansonxi , September 30, 2013 10:33 AM
    Sony made less mistakes this time so they are in a better position to be the top console like the PS2 was. These cycles tend to repeat with every major product generation and happen in other industries (AMD vs. Intel, iPhone vs. Android, Blu-Ray vs. HD DVD). Maybe M$ will be back on top next time.
  • 9 Hide
    clonazepam , September 30, 2013 10:37 AM
    Sony is still one firmware update away from erasing any promises they have made to increase pre-order and release day sales. They have the track record. I'm highly skeptical, and interested to see where everything is at within the next year.
  • -6 Hide
    MajinCry , September 30, 2013 11:03 AM
    Eh. I'd rather buy a WiiU.
  • 1 Hide
    fudoka711 , September 30, 2013 11:26 AM
    Well, even though the article decided to focus on under 40 year olds (those that would likely be playing on the console), it didn't focus on who who actually have the money to buy one. Of course anyone 18+ probably can get the money to buy a console, I'm sure most of the purchases will end up being gifts for the holiday season. Under that logic, more parents will still buy their kids the xbox (rather than switch) because its more recognizable to them and they don't have to do anything special with the membership.

    Having said that, maybe with parents becoming more tech savvy and kids wielding even more influence over their parents' purchase decisions these days - PS4 sales could indeed top that of the XBONE. Maybe the PS4 will be the new PS2?
  • 8 Hide
    edogawa , September 30, 2013 11:27 AM
    This poll is not very legitimate, like many others, I can promise millions of consoles will sell. 1297 people is so small and irrelevant, are these avid gamers, casual gamers? You need to sample the gamer base at a large, in the thousands.

    I am a PC gamer only, but I might just buy a PS4 since it's priced so well offering a lot features, I spend more on a single GPU, so why not!?
  • 1 Hide
    bustapr , September 30, 2013 11:36 AM
    well it is a given that the ps4 would be the favorite because of its price tag. the initial raging infernal hatred of the XB1 isnt helping MS either. I myself prefer the ps4 for its features and game developer support, AND its price tag. Im not buying any this holiday since my ps3 is still kicking as my media/blueray player. in a year or 2 I might replace it and give my ps3 away to some kid.
  • -3 Hide
    LordConrad , September 30, 2013 11:38 AM
    My Launch Edition PS4 is already on pre-order with Amazon. It will arrive on my doorstep the same day it becomes available for purchase.

    The couple of exclusive 360 games I really like are no longer exclusive. I had both a Xbox 360 and a PS3, but I sold my 360 after realizing I hadn't used it for several months.
  • 2 Hide
    ddpruitt , September 30, 2013 11:40 AM
    I didn't need a poll to tell me this. PS4 preorders sold out within hours, took the Xbone weeks to accomplish the same thing.
  • -2 Hide
    kartu , September 30, 2013 12:21 PM
    Cause askig for subscription when I start my browser is such a good idea, you Microsoft, you...

    And good job in previous generation, Xbox Live Gold suckers...
  • 5 Hide
    alerodsan77 , September 30, 2013 12:25 PM
    I don't think an online survey is going to reflect the definitive outcome

    1) If you took the time to answer an online survey regarding this issue is likely that you are interested in the issue, so the ones who answered that were going to buy a console will be aware of all the development and the Microsoft mishaps along the road, so that could explain the tilt

    2) Unlike PC users, the majority of console users are not really aware of whats going on, and just buy things by impulse. Is likely that if you have a Xbox 360 youll be picking a XONE, this also works for Sony, the base of Microsoft console owners is bigger, so they will sell more consoles

    3) During the initial months Microsoft consoles will be more available due to a better supply chain

    4) Im not sure what to think about the elasticity of de 100 USD spread between the consoles and Microsoft bigger day one titles, I think they won’t be determined

    Even as I will be buying a PS4, I'll bet that Microsoft is going to maintain a greater user base, but the gap is going get closer over the time

  • 2 Hide
    fulle , September 30, 2013 12:29 PM
    I think Microsoft and Nintendo have damaged reputations after the last gen.
  • 3 Hide
    slomo4sho , September 30, 2013 12:43 PM
    Whatever happen to random sampling? This just concludes the likelihood of individuals that frequent Reuters website willing to buy these consoles...
  • 2 Hide
    redstar , September 30, 2013 1:18 PM
    this article has bias or just repeating rumours as fact. The xbox one will indeed be able to turn off or pause the Kinect 2 sensor. ( And it is a bit misleading to drop the notion that PS4 users will now have to pay a year subscription for online play just like the xbox one. Instead, there is just a sub note that well the music will be free and streaming (which yes, is definitely good). Not to mention the assumption that reuters is big so indeed it must be a totally random sample. pshhhhh.

  • 4 Hide
    soldier44 , September 30, 2013 1:33 PM
    This is a no brainer, I also blame that horrible Win 8 crapola for the crapbox one's failure and not even released yet. I game on PC which owns both so called next gen consoles anyway.
  • 6 Hide
    koga73 , September 30, 2013 2:03 PM
    I choose none of the above... PC FTW
  • 4 Hide
    jimmysmitty , September 30, 2013 2:22 PM
    I think these surveys are pretty much bunk. They take a very small sample size and assume from there when the population changes per area. People on the east coast don't like the same things people on the west coast like.

    That said, I will just stick with my PC. Already more powerful than the "next-gen" consoles.

    Does that make my PC "future-gen"?
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