Sony's lead over Microsoft in the current generation is a bit of a surprise to many, and even the Xbox One manufacturer is unsure if they can close the gap completely.
Xbox boss Phil Spencer spoke during a panel at the 2015 GeekWire Summit (as cited by Videogamer ) and when asked if he thought Xbox One could catch PlayStation 4, he answered:
"You know, I don't know. You know, the length of the generation… They [Sony] have a huge lead and they have a good product. I love the content, the games lineup that we have."
Spencer went on to say that the well-documented policy reversals at the start of the generation left a bad taste in people's mouths. As such, Microsoft "fundamentally lost the trust" of their most loyal customers. Most would agree with that. Added Spencer:
"Whether it's always-on, used games, whatever the feature was, we lost the trust in them that they were at the center of our decision-making process. Were we building a product for us, or were we building a product for the gamers? And as soon as that question came into people's minds and they looked at anything, whether it was the power of our box, our launch lineup, microtransactions, any of the features that you talked about, what you find is very quickly you lose the benefit of the doubt. You lose your customer's assumption that the reason you're building your product is to delight them and not just build a better and more maybe manipulative product."
All of that is spot-on, Phil. If only you could've realized it before the sh** hit the fan when you announced Xbox One. After PS4 was announced, one analyst said Microsoft had best bring its "A-game" and that's not what happened. The announcement meant with a ton of flak and even though MS quickly back-pedaled, we wondered if damage control was enough .
Obviously, it wasn't. All of that led to PS4 getting a huge lead out of the gate and it might stay that way.