Sony has been doing incredibly well on the market as of late. It’s completed its turnaround of misfortune with the PlayStation 3 by dominating with its PlayStation 4, which has sold 60 million units worldwide thus far, and is on par to becoming one of the company’s most popular consoles – even if it has a ways to go to catch up with the PlayStation 2. Hey, it’s getting there.
That said, the company’s recent surge came earlier this year when it temporarily dropped the price of the system to $249 and offered a limited edition gold model that fetched a lot of sales. And the company could have a repeat instance of that, as there’s word that a permanent price drop could be coming as soon as next week. Sony hasn’t said anything yet, but it’s very likely.
Is this a good time for a PlayStation 4 price drop? Absolutely. And there are many factors to consider as to why this business move will pay off for the company over the course of the holiday season.
The first thing people look for with video game consoles is value, and the PlayStation 4 has already established that it has this in spades. Look at its library of games, its ease of use for its online networks (despite periods of down time here and there – not nearly as bad as it was in 2011), and the features that have become staples for the network. Now imagine all that with a lower price point of around $269. Not only would that make the system a true value to gamers, but also the cheapest console on the market, beating out the Nintendo Switch’s $299 price point. Not to mention that it’d be a hell of a lot easier to find a PlayStation 4 than it is a Nintendo Switch – and that’s going to make things a bit easier for parents and gaming couples over the holidays.
Setting up a price drop in the midst of August is a brilliant move. It gives Sony lots of leeway in terms of setting up for the holiday season, while at the same time serving as a possible point of promotion for upcoming titles. After all, August is a big month for Sony, between the recent release of Patapon, the forthcoming drop of Matterfall, which arrives next week, and, of course, the big one, Uncharted: The Lost Legacy, which arrives on August 22nd. And they’re all reasonably priced to boot, so gamers can afford to get them and the system without draining their wallet dry. If Sony plays its cards right, it can promote the price drop and the games in one flail swoop, and win over millions of gamers that don’t have the system yet. It’s a complete win-win situation.
Plus, we really want to see Matterfall sell well. Housemarque did a splendid job with Hex Machina earlier in the year, and this game looks like it’s going to be great.
Sony currently has the PlayStation 4 Pro priced at $399, and that’s proving to be a thorn in the side of gamers that aren’t ready to make the jump to 4K just yet. Still, with a price drop of the PlayStation 4, Sony might feel a little more at ease when it comes to shaving down the price of its premium system model. After seeing how impactful sales could be with the general model of the system, the company may relent and offer up the PS4 Pro for a lower price point of $349, and maybe even $299 if the getting is good. That’s a longshot – who knows what kind of financial bath it would take if it did initiate that kind of price drop – but it’d be worth it to put more systems in homes, no matter which model they choose. Plus, they’d have an advantage over a major competitor…
Is there excitement for the Xbox One X? Yep, there is. But there’s also hesitation, since it will stand to be the most expensive gaming console on the market for $499. By pricing the general PlayStation 4 model to nearly half that – and maybe even the PS4 Pro following that – Sony will show that it’s not afraid to give players a bargain should they need it, with the games to back it up. On top of that, the question of availability with the Xbox One X will come up, and since players can’t find that – surprise! – Sony will have plenty of stock with the PS4 and the PS4 Pro on hand, and that’ll serve as a win for those that need something this holiday season. The lower price point will soothe the blow as well.
Sony already has plans up and running for the PlayStation 5, but that’s a while away, and 2018 could serve as one of the company’s biggest gaming years ever. We already know about two big blockbusters that are on the horizon – God of War and Insomniac Games’ Spider-Man – but there could be many others, not to mention big third-party releases like Far Cry 5 and Red Dead Redemption 2. By putting the price drop in place now, the company can get that promotion out of the way and then get the ball rolling on an even bigger campaign for what could be its biggest year on the market to date. (Yes, that’s considering the killer year it’s having right now.) It’s all about timing, and if Sony can get theirs just right, it’ll be like catching lightning in a bottle – and they’ll continue to rule the market.