Xbox One VS PS4: Andrew House Talks Differences Between Next-Gen Consoles

By Luke Caulfield , Updated Dec 18, 2013 01:27 AM EST
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With a week left until Christmas, the next-gen PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles are an item on a lot of peoples' wish lists. But try explaining the difference between the systems to some last minute shopper just trying to get his or her hands on one for their screaming, ungrateful little hell spawn.

In an attempt to educate the remaining few who are completely unaware and / or uninformed about the two consoles, Sony Computer Entertainment President and CEO Andrew House told The Guardian exactly what separates the PS4 from Microsoft's Xbox One.

The biggest difference? "I'd point to price - which, as we're still in straitened economic times, is going to be a key consideration for a lot of people," said House. Makes sense. At $399 compared to the Xbox One's cost of $499, the PS4 certainly isn't cheap, but it's definitely the more attractive console for consumers not looking to break the bank on holiday spending. It's also the reason famed analyst Michael Pachter has pointed to which led Sony to an apparent victory over Microsoft.

House continued: "We're very confident that our architecture, particularly around graphics performance, is really going to make our games sing on PlayStation 4 - even those that are multi-platform. And I think we've done a really nice job with the interface, and facilitating the social aspects around gaming, in a way that is seamless and very intuitive for people. So you can broadcast your own in-game experiences via Twitch, and I think we're the only platform that has Facebook integration. That's going to be a key differentiator."

House also feels that the ability for players to choose to use their actual name instead of a random avatar is also a factor in the console's success, and what helps it stand out.

"I was talking about this with the folks at Facebook the other day: it just makes people behave in a different way online, and possibly makes the whole community a bit more welcoming. It makes it easier to find friends and like-minded players. That's another core example of how we like to differentiate the platform," said House.

Much like Microsoft had pitched the Xbox One as the all-in-one console that would take over the living room, House also acknowledged that the PS4 was for more than just playing games.

"...unlike PlayStation 3, it now comes fully baked with a suite of non-games entertainment services. That functions as the secondary reason for purchase. We've seen that being very powerful in the past, particularly regarding adoption by families - with PlayStation 2, you got a DVD player, and with PlayStation 3 it was a Blu-ray player. The primary purchaser will buy it for playing games. But it's a great convincing mechanic, maybe, for other people in the family. And it gives you an opportunity for multi-usage within the same household."

We learned earlier this month that as of December 1, Sony sales were at 2.1 million consoles sold worldwide since the console first launched in North America on November 15, over a million of which came from the first 24 hours

At the time Sony had revealed its initial sales, Sony Computer Entertainment President and Group CEO Andrew House wrote on the PS Blog that the sales were "an impressive and record-setting accomplishment for our company and for our industry, and we couldn't have done it without you. I want to personally thank PlayStation fans, both old and new, for your vote of confidence."

He continued, saying that the "PS4 delivered the best launch in PlayStation history," while claiming that "demand remains incredibly strong and continues to overwhelm the supply worldwide."

So there you have it. According to House, using your own name, lower price, the ability to do more with your console than just game, combined with some light social netoworking are all reasons for why the PS4 rises over the Xbox One. As far as a quick overview, here's the basic down n' dirty:

Under the hood, the PlayStation 4 boasts Supercharged PC architecture, X86 CPU, Enhanced PC GPU, and 8GB Unified Memory according to the official specs.

It supports the same PlayStation Plus service as the Vita and PlayStation 3. However, a Plus subscription is required for online multiplayer games, but not for additional media services like Netflix. Sony has also updated the Dual Shock controllers with a touch screen and improved shoulder triggers, and bundles the console with a headset.

Available titles for the system include Killzone: Shadow FallKnackResogun, and more. You can check out a complete list of launch titles' prices and install sizes here. It currently retails for $399.

In the opposite corner, Microsoft's Xbox One claims an 8-core x86 processor and Microsoft hopes it will take the place of the family room cable box by letting you watch Blu-ray movies and TV through the console, in a "seamless transition" that lets players switch from playing games to watching shows and/or movies. It will come fully loaded with 8GB of RAM and a 500GB hard drive.

The console's exclusives include Dead Rising 3Killer InstinctRyse: Son of Rome, and more. You can check out a list of the install sizes for all of the launch games here. The Xbox One retails for $499.

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