Activision: Xbox One has to "convince" gamers that it's worth $499

"If you do a focus group of a gazillion people and you show them two prices for two competitive products, 100 percent always prefer the lower price," says Activision CEO.

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Activision has entered the discussion about Microsoft's decision to price the Xbox One at $499, with CEO Eric Hirshberg saying that platform holder will need to "convince" gamers that the console is worth the money.

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"It's up to [Microsoft] to win the value argument," said Hirshberg in an interview with GamesIndustry International. "If you do a focus group of a gazillion people and you show them two prices for two competitive products, 100 percent always prefer the lower price."

"I think from a first impression standpoint the win goes to Sony, at least as it relates to pricing. Microsoft is going to have to win the hearts and minds and convince people that the higher price point is worth it, and that it provides really meaningful capabilities that will be meaningful to consumers. And it's a long game, so I am sure that's what they intend on trying to do."

Sony has priced the PlayStation 4 at $399, but Microsoft's higher price also includes its latest motion-sensing Kinect peripheral. Does Hirshberg think the Kinect 2.0 will make a long-term difference to the Xbox One's chances? "I think it's the same answer; I feel they have to show why that's a good thing and why it's worth the premium and deserves inclusion and why it's something that gamers are going to come to really value and appreciate."

"It's going to be a fun battle to watch, but I think they definitely have to win hearts and minds in terms of the value of it," concluded Hirshberg.

Activision has an timed exclusivity deal with Microsoft for Call of Duty DLC, and the third-party publisher also took to the stage during Microsoft's Xbox One reveal event in May to show off Call of Duty: Ghosts. The publisher has also signed an exclusivity deal with Sony for content on Bungie's upcoming shooter Destiny.

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