Microsoft has come under fire from some critics who worry the company’s new Xbox One X is overpriced. And now it’s responding.
In an interview with gaming news site Eurogamer on Tuesday, Microsoft’s Xbox boss Phil Spencer said that his company’s decision to price the Xbox One X at $499—$100 more expensive than its closest competitor, the Sony PlayStation 4 Pro—is based on a slate of features its challenger doesn’t have.
“This is a true 4K console,” Spencer said, referring to the Xbox One X’s support for 4K resolution, higher fidelity than HD. “If you just look at the specs of what this box is, it’s in a different league than any other console that’s out there.”
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Spencer went on to tout the Xbox One X’s features, including its fast processor and higher-end graphics chip, which he says, should deliver better graphical quality in video games.
The Microsoft’s (MSFT) executive’s comments come just days after Microsoft announced the new Xbox One X console at the E3 gaming expo in Los Angeles. The device, which had previously been known by its codename Project Scorpio, comes with faster components than its predecessors. It also supports native 4K resolution, which means games that can run in the higher resolution will work without trouble on the Xbox One X.
Microsoft was quick to note that the 4K support stands in stark contrast to the PlayStation 4 Pro, which technically offers a 4K-like resolution, but not actual 4K. However, for that small bump in resolution, customers will need to pay $100 more for the Xbox One X.
Soon after the Xbox One X’s announcement, industry watchers criticized Microsoft’s pricing decision. They noted the small resolution boost and wondered whether Microsoft could get customers to pay $100 more for it.
For his part, Spencer believes the Xbox One X is on an island all its own in the console market and doesn’t actually have a competitor. Instead, he told Eurogamer that PlayStation 4 Pro’s actual Microsoft counterpart is the Xbox One S, a console less powerful than the Xbox One X and cheaper at $250.
Sony (SNE) hasn’t commented on Microsoft’s comments with on its console and the Xbox One X. And so far, Microsoft hasn’t yet offered pre-orders on the hardware, so it’s impossible to know how customers might respond to the lofty price tag.
Microsoft plans to release the Xbox One X on November 7.