Sony has announced that it is starting its assault on the Christmas console market early, lopping £50 off the recommended retail price of its PlayStation 4 ahead of rival Microsoft.
The PS4 launched shortly after Microsoft's Xbox One, and did so with a clever change: dropping plans to bundle the PlayStation Camera accessory allowed Sony to release the console for less than Microsoft's equivalent, which at launch was only available with a bundled Kinect camera, despite the two devices' extremely similar specifications. Combined with some PR missteps from Microsoft and a more powerful graphics processor, this has helped Sony sell considerably more units than its rival - a lead it has no intention of allowing to slip during the Christmas shopping period.
Ahead of a likely similar cut from Microsoft, Sony has announced that it is dropping the recommended retail price of the PS4 by £50 in the UK, with similar drops in other regions, for a new RRP of £299.99. Before you get too excited, though, it's worth mentioning that few retailers sell the PS4 at RRP: it's far more common to find the console available with at least one bundled game for sub-£300, leaving questions as to exactly how much of an impact the cut will have on the price consumers actually pay.
The price cut comes as Sony gears up to launch PlayStation VR
, a virtual reality headset accessory for the console and formerly known as Project Morpheus. The company has been investing heavily in the project, including setting up a dedicated studio
and acquiring time-of-flight tracking specialist Softkinetic
to provide capabilities similar to those of Microsoft's Kinect.