Neither the PlayStation 5 nor the Xbox Series X have prices that have been made public yet, but it's not hard to imagine that one of the console's costs may be at least partially dependent on the competition. Sony's chief financial officer Hiroki Totoki seemed to suggest as much during a recent earnings call when asked about factors at play around the PlayStation 5. Totoki said some things can be controlled by Sony while others will depend on factors currently unknown to Sony.
Totoki's response to a question during the earnings call as reported by VGC first addressed things Sony could control around the next-gen console. These include costs pertaining to production and labor as needed to "prepare the right volume" ahead of the PlayStation 5's launch. The Sony CFO then suggested that there are things at play that aren't clear right now because Sony is has competition with its next console launch.
"What is not very clear or visible is because we are competing in the space, so it's very difficult to discuss anything about the price at this point of time, and depending upon the price level, we may have to determine the promotion that we are going to deploy and how much costs we are prepared to pay," Totoki said.
The Xbox Series X was not explicitly named in the conversation, but it's evident that any type of competition Sony may face during its PlayStation 5 launch would come from that console. Nintendo has already confirmed that it's got no plans to launch a new Nintendo Switch model this year, so the only competition Sony would face around the holidays would be the next Xbox. There have also been talks of a second Xbox that's thought to have a different price than the Xbox Series X, and if true, it'd mean Sony would have two different price points to consider around launch.
Totoki continued to say it was a "question of balance" and that Sony would be trying to maintain that balance and profit off the new console.
"So it's a question of balance, and because it's a balancing act it's very difficult to say anything concrete at this point of time, but when I said smooth transition, we mean that we will definitely choose the optimal approach and that we will try to have the best balance so that we will be profitable in the life, during the life of this product," he said.
Both Sony's PlayStation 5 and Microsoft's Xbox Series X are scheduled to release during the holidays of this year.