PS4 Price Drops Even With the Console’s Success, Here’s Why

Source: Sony

Source: Sony

Despite dominating the video game console market for the past two years, Sony has dropped the retail price of the PlayStation 4. As of October 9, the console starts at $350 instead of $400. That’s the same price as the Xbox One, and only $50 more than the significantly less powerful Wii U.

Sony will also offer a number of game bundles in the coming months that you’ll be able to buy with the same $50 price cut. Here’s a rundown of the pricing for the upcoming PS4 bundles:

  • Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection PS4 Bundle: $350 (available October 9)
  • Limited Edition Call of Duty: Black Ops III 1TB PS4 Bundle: $430 (available November 6)
  • Limited Edition Disney Infinity 3.0: Star Wars PS4 Bundle: $400 (available November 13)
  • Limited Edition Star Wars Battlefront PS4 Bundle: $400 (available November 17)
  • Star Wars Battlefront PS4 Bundle: $350 (available November 17)

If you buy one of the bundles, assuming you would have paid full price for the game that comes with it, the PS4 system effectively costs about $290. Not a bad deal, considering that you would have paid $400 before the price cut on October 9.

The big question: Why would Sony drop the price now? If you look at the sales figures, a price cut doesn’t seem necessary. The PS4 is breaking all kinds of records, and has sold more than twice as many units of either of its competitors. In fact, the PS4 has sold more units than the Xbox One and Wii U combined. The PlayStation 4 seems all but unstoppable. So why cut the price now?

I think it’s because Sony wants to strengthen its position against Microsoft this holiday season. Although the PS4 has plenty of sales momentum, it faces some stiff competition from the Xbox One in Q4.

As far as exclusive games go, the Xbox One is the clear winner this holiday. Here’s Microsoft’s lineup:

  • Gears of War: Ultimate Edition – August 25
  • Forza Motorsport 6 – September 15
  • Halo 5: Guardians – October 27
  • Rise of the Tomb Raider – November 10

Here are the major PlayStation 4 exclusives releasing during that same period:

  • Until Dawn – August 25
  • Uncharted: The Nathan Drake Collection – October 7

Source: Naughty Dog

Source: Naughty Dog

Sure, Uncharted is popular, but The Nathan Drake Collection is comprised of games that have been available on PS3 for years. Until Dawn is great, but only for fans of horror movies. Neither is as enticing as new entries in the Tomb Raider or Halo series.

So the PS4 could use a little help in Q4. This $50 price cut will put it on even ground with the Xbox One, and the big multi-platform releases coming soon will ensure that PS4 buyers aren’t starved for games to play. Upcoming multi-platform games include:

  • Assassin’s Creed Syndicate – October 23
  • Need for Speed – November 3
  • Call of Duty: Black Ops III – November 6
  • Fallout 4 – November 10
  • Star Wars Battlefront – November 17
  • Just Cause 3 – December 1
  • Rainbow Six: Siege – December 1

We’re looking at an embarrassment of riches in the coming months, so whichever video game console customers buy, they’ll have plenty of high-profile games to play. Xbox One owners may get a better crop of exclusive games, but thanks to the $50 price drop, the PlayStation 4 should be able to hold its own.

Will it be enough to convince most customers to buy a PS4 over an Xbox One? I think it just might be.

Follow Chris on Twitter @CheatSheetChris

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