Microsoft seems to be making a habit out of shooting itself in the foot.
With gamers still smarting over the company’s $499 pricing announcement for the Xbox One, the head of the Xbox division has ruffled more feathers in addressing concerns about the system’s demand for a internet connection.
"We have a product for people who aren't able to get some form of connectivity - it's called Xbox 360," Don Mattrick told Geoff Keighley on GameTrailers.
While Mattrick was likely attempting to point out that Microsoft will continue to support its existing console for some time, the somewhat flippant nature of his comment came across as dismissive to the fans who have voiced concerns about the system’s need to check in online every 24 hours.
With internet connectivity becoming ubiquitous throughout the country -- and many parts of the world (at least, the ones Microsoft is targeting with the Xbox One) -- the company thinks some of the outcry over the requirement is overstated.
“When I read the blogs and they talked about who’s really most impacted, it was a person who said ‘Hey, I’m on a nuclear sub’,” said Mattrick. “I don’t even know what it means to be on a nuclear sub, but I’ve got to imagine it’s not easy to get an Internet connection.”
Despite the PR tempest, Microsoft says pre-orders for the Xbox One are strong. Amazon has told the company that it has nearly sold out of its initial allocation of units (though how large that allocation is was not disclosed).
And Yusuf Mehdi, SVP of the Interactive Entertainment Business, told Yahoo! Games that while the Xbox One will cost more than the PS4, the company believes consumers will look beyond the price tags.
“It isn’t just about price,” he says. “It’s about value. It’s the value for the price. What I believe is we have incredible value for the price we’re offering our system. And I think it’s unmatched compared to other things.”
View a replay of Microsoft's press conference below:
- Technology & Electronics
- Xbox 360
- internet connection