Saturday, November 25, 2006

Post Thanksgiving Post

Now that I've recovered from the tryptophan-induced coma from Thursday, I figured I'd get back on this blog. First off, I hope everyone had a happy Thanksgiving, and I'd like to wish everyone a happy holiday season.

Luckily, the Valley has entered the lull between Turkey Day and the start of new year, so I haven't missed out on much. The biggest news from the past week-ish has probably been the release of the two next gen gaming platforms, Playstation 3 and the Nintendo Wii.

I actually had a draft of an analytical piece on the gaming market, focusing on the new platforms, but decided to trash it when I realized that, well, I don't know jack when it comes to video games. My favorite system is still probably N64 or even SNES, both from back in the day (you really can't beat Bond, Smash Bros., Mario Kart, and the rest). And I get smoked whenever I play Halo, but you can't blame me, those new controllers are so hard to figure out. Finally, forgetting to save the draft of the piece (as I was engrossed in Manchester United's riveting UEFA Champions League game) sealed the ensured that the post would never see the light of day.

Anywho, the point of that post was that I'm betting on the Wii to emerge as the dominant platform. And the point of this post is that I want your opinion. My thinking behind conjecturing the Wii's success is that it's the cheapest and aims to simplify games, enabling it to target a market outside hardcore gamers. But let's hear what you have to think...


  1. Well Xbox is never going to make any money. Microsoft still calls it a success, but one questions the veracity of this when few companies can achieve this kind of "success" and still avoid Chapter 11. Even if Xbox can successfully leverage the Windows monopoly, it will still be burning through cash so fast it would make blush had it not already been awash in Xbox-esque "success."

  2. So will Xbox gain market share? Doubt it.

    The Xbox has 2 differentiating features:
    1. It was the first next-gen console out the door by a significant margin--but so was the Dreamcast and that didn't save it from PS2 FUD. More importantly, this lead has been squandered as PS3 and Wii are in the open and Microsoft has only sold 6 million 360s. Sadly (for Microsoft), the 360 was outsold by the 6 year old PS2, which still managed to sell 11 units in the time XBox 360 was in the market.
    2. Leveraging "Integration" with the Windows monopoly. Microsoft's pie-in-the-sky fantasies of the Xbox becoming a "media center" are hobbled by one problem: Microsoft has already designed, produced, and marketed such a device under the tantalyzing and not exactly cryptic name of "Windows Media Center Edition." Oops.

    Microsoft has become the quintissential lumbering giant. The left hand doesn't know what the right is doing, and is wasting resources and energies only to wind up in competition with itself--and it may very well still manage to lose.

    The company's first competitive advantage--7G exclusitivity--has all but expired and will be completely obviated when PS3 production and distribution picks up steam.

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  4. Hello, Ravi.

    My name is Albert Sun, and I'm with the Daily Pennsylvanian. I'm doing a story on the three new video game systems.

    I'd love to talk to you, e-mail at sun.albert at gmail dot com.


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