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Microsoft says it’s planning ‘bold’ moves to make you pick the Xbox Series X over Sony’s PS5

Published Feb 11th, 2020 12:07PM EST
Xbox Series X vs. PS5
Image: Microsoft

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We have no idea when it’ll happen, but Sony will soon unveil the PlayStation 5 in all its glory. And when that launch event takes place and we finally learn everything there is to know about the PS5 and its unique features, then Microsoft will counter with its own Xbox Series X reveal. Or we could be in for a significant surprise, and Microsoft could be the first company to give gamers actual specifics beyond the generalities both companies offered bout their next-gen products. We have no way of knowing, as neither company has announced any official press event at this time. But Microsoft does have “bold” moves planned in its effort to steal you away from the PS5.

There’s absolutely no question who won the last PlayStation vs. Xbox war, and Microsoft can’t afford to deny it. Sony sold close to 110 million PS4 units since 2013, while Microsoft only moved about 50 million combined Xbox One models during the same period.

“Let’s face it, we’re not in the market position we wanted to be in this last generation. I don’t think we’re going to get to disrupt and grow our business just doing what we’ve always done. Let’s go try to do new things,” Xbox chief Phil Spencer told GameSpot. He was actually explaining Microsoft’s surprising decision to reveal the Xbox Series X name and design during The Game Awards in December.

That was totally unexpected, and the result of a pushy marketing exec who dared to think different. “We made the decision … the decision was actually really pushed forward by one of our marketing leads, and she’s awesome, and she just stood up in a room, and she said, ‘We should go do something bold. Something we’ve never done before,'” Spencer recounted.

He warmed up to the idea, and the Series X announcement worked for Microsoft, moving the conversation away from the PlayStation 5. Before the Series X reveal, we actually told you how Microsoft was losing the buzz battle with Sony. Not only did we have a name for the new PlayStation, but the console was featured in several leaks, giving Sony a significant lead over Microsoft in terms of hype. Meanwhile, the 2020 Xbox was only known as Project Scarlett.

Going forward, Microsoft plans additional “bold” moves to lure in customers. “I like trying something bold. I’m really happy with the way it played out and the response from the fans,” Spencer said. “But every decision we make between now and launch, we’re trying to think about things in a different way. Some of them we’ll get right. Some of them we won’t. But we’re definitely not going to be meek. We’re going to be bold in what we’re trying to go do.”

That sounds great in theory, but we don’t know what that might mean in practice. A bolder Microsoft might be exactly what gamers need in the upcoming PS5 vs. Xbox Series X console war.

Chris Smith Senior Writer

Chris Smith has been covering consumer electronics ever since the iPhone revolutionized the industry in 2008. When he’s not writing about the most recent tech news for BGR, he brings his entertainment expertise to Marvel’s Cinematic Universe and other blockbuster franchises.

Outside of work, you’ll catch him streaming almost every new movie and TV show release as soon as it's available.

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