Activision CEO: Microsoft Must Prove Xbox One Value

The Xbox One price has been a hot topic as of late, with many gamers citing it as a key reason the PS4 is outpacing Microsoft’s console in pre-purchase polls. The price is also a major point of contention amongst publishers, who will need strong install bases on both consoles to continue their success.

One such publisher that has put a lot of stock in Microsoft‘s court is Activision, whose recently announced title Destiny made a big splash at this past E3. Needless to say, if Activision wants to ensure Destiny is a success they will need gamers to invest in the Xbox One.

As Activision CEO Eric Hirshberg explains, getting gamers to invest starts with Microsoft proving that the Xbox One’s $100 premium is worth it. Making gamers understand that they are paying for a better console experience.

“Microsoft is going to have to convince people that the higher price point is worth it, and that it provides really meaningful capabilities that will be meaningful to consumers. And it’s a long game, so I am sure that’s what they intend on trying to do.”

Part of that $100 premium, as we know, includes the cost of the new Kinect sensor, which is a requirement for Xbox One operation (games, movies, apps). Unfortunately, just saying that the price tag includes Kinect isn’t going cut it. Hirshberg believes that Microsoft needs to show that the inclusion of Kinect is warranted, and that the Xbox One console will leverage the peripheral in meaningful ways.

“I feel they have to show why that’s a good thing and why it’s worth the premium and deserves inclusion and why it’s something that gamers are going to come to really value and appreciate. … It’s going to be a fun battle to watch, but I think they definitely have to win hearts and minds in terms of the value of it.”

Obviously, all of Activision’s eggs are not in the Destiny basket — they still have Call of Duty — but they clearly want Xbox One to succeed just as much as any publisher. At the same time, gamers will need several reasons to pick up the console. Yes, Destiny does look great, but that game doesn’t release until some time next year. The real question is what will make gamers pick up the Xbox One now, and will they be happy about their decision?

At one point, the game sharing feature sounded like a good selling point for the Xbox One, but Microsoft’s poor communication and restrictive online requirements ended up killing that intriguing feature. Now some could argue that Microsoft has a console that is $100 more expensive and comes with a peripheral not a lot of gamers want.

How do you think Microsoft will convince gamers the Xbox One is worth the $500 price tag?

The Xbox One will hit store shelves this November.


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