Xbox Says It Won’t Keep Up With PlayStation 5 Price Rise
Xbox boss Phil Spencer has reiterated that Microsoft is not considering raising the price of its consoles – after Sony stunned fans last month by raising the price of the PlayStation 5.
Talk overnight CNBCSpencer noted the current economic issues many were facing, and said Xbox didn’t feel “it was the right decision for us at this point” to do the same.
“At a time when our customers are more economically challenged and uncertain than ever, we don’t believe it’s the right decision for us at this point to raise prices for our consoles,” Spencer said.
Would Spencer rule out raising Xbox Series X/S prices? No, he couldn’t – but based on his comments today, that seems unlikely.
The Xbox boss noted how ‘value is incredibly important’ and that the company was enjoying success with its low-cost £250 Xbox Series S console – which accounted for more than half of Series X/S sales .
“You know, we’re still evaluating our business going forward, so I don’t think we’ll ever be able to say anything we’ll do. never do something,” Spencer explained. “But when we look at our consoles today…we think value is extremely important.
“We like the position of Series S in the market – which is our lowest cost console. Over half of our new players that we find come through Series S. And I can definitely say we don’t have the intention today to increase the price of our consoles.”
Nintendo recently commented to reassure customers that it didn’t expect a similar price hike for Nintendo Switch either.
Writing last month announcing the price hike, PlayStation boss Jim Ryan blamed Sony’s decision on “high global inflation rates, as well as unfavorable currency trends, affecting consumers and creating pressures across many industries” and said it had been a “difficult decision”.
The move was widely criticized, especially at a time when many are facing increased economic hardship.
Speaking to Eurogamer, industry analyst David Gibson of MST Financial explained that Sony’s decision was due to the foreign exchange costs it was now passing on to consumers.
“Sony would have budgeted some cross rates against its dollar costs,” Gibson explained, “but the pound and other currencies all moved due to rising interest rates. Yes, freight rates have increased, but the semiconductor market is improving and DRAM prices are falling The fact that Sony hasn’t changed US prices shows how much of this is a currency situation versus dollar costs, not inflation.
During the same CNBC interview today, Spencer was also asked to discuss the increasingly public row over Microsoft’s intention to buy Activision Blizzard, and the war of words exchanged by her and Sony over Call of Duty.