PlayStation 4 and Xbox 720 could cost just $350, expected to launch this fall

Dan Graziano
BGR News

PlayStation 4 Xbox 720 Release Date
PlayStation 4 Xbox 720 Release Date

Sony (SNE) and Microsoft (MSFT) are both expected to announce their next-generation gaming consoles at the Electronics Entertainment Expo in June, or even a little before then. While we have seen rumored specs for both the PlayStation 4 and the Xbox 720, one thing that has escaped us is a possible price tag. In a research note to investors on Monday, Colin Sebastian of Baird Equity Research suggested that both consoles could retail for between $350 and $400 in the U.S., Games Industry International reported. The analyst revealed that during the Consumer Electronics Show last week he spent time “with a number of companies involved in video game development and distribution,” who informed him that the next-generation consoles will be “largely built from ‘off the shelf’ high-end PC components, along with hybrid physical/digital distribution models, enhanced voice controls and motion sensing, and broad multi-media capabilities.”

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Sebastian believes that “a PC-based architecture (Intel chips in the case of Xbox) should have a number of advantages over custom-developed silicon.” In his opinion, there will be less of a “learning curve” for software developers compared to completely new technology, and the cost of production and retail price points should be lower than prior console launches.

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Microsoft launched the Xbox 360 in 2005 with a top end price of $399, while Sony released the PlayStation 3 a year later for $499 and $599 respectively.

“It will be easier to build online services around PC chip architecture, including flexible business models (free-to-play, subscriptions) and multi-media (over the top) content offerings,” the analyst added. “For Microsoft, this design will also allow for more integration with Windows 8 and Windows Mobile devices.”

Sebastian expects Sony to launch the PlayStation 4 in October and Microsoft to launch the Xbox 720 in November.

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