The Xbox One S has one feature that is more powerful than the PS4 Pro offers.
The cards are on the table for the Holiday season in the video game market. At least from Sony and Microsoft. Nintendo will just make a mountain of money with Super Mario Run on the iPhone, but not with new hardware.
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Sony unveiled this week the PS4 Pro with 4K gaming and HDR support. The $399 Sony PS4 Pro is available for pre-order now and ships November 10. Microsoft already sells a console that supports 4K video playback and HDR support. The $299 Xbox One S is not just slicker, but can display native 4K videos. The Xbox One S not only supports 4K streaming from Netflix, but also the new Ultra HD Blu-ray discs.
The Sony PS4 Pro only has a standard Blu-ray drive. It can not play Ultra HD Blu-ray discs. This is surprising. Andrew House, head of the Sony Interactive Entertainment explains: "Our feeling is that while physical media continues to be a big part of the games business, we see a trend on video towards streaming. Certainly with our user base, it’s the second biggest use case for people’s time on the system so we place more emphasis on that area." House also said in an interview with The Guardian that support for UHD discs in a later firmware update is not possible.
Sony's basically betting that Ultra HD Blu-ray will fail. This might be true on the other hand it appears that adding UHD Blu-ray capability is not that expensive. Microsoft offers it in a $299 Xbox One S. The Sony PS4 Pro is $100 more expensive.
The only remaining advantage of the PS4 Pro against the cheaper Xbox One S is 4K native game play. The Xbox One S is only upscaling games to 4K.
The console war could get interesting again this Holiday season. The Sony PS4 Pro is not an outright champion yet. The Xbox One S could come out as the big winner. This would strengthen Microsoft's market share ahead of the release of Xbox Scorpio in the 2017 Holiday shopping season. The Scorpio will be more powerful than the PS4 Pro. How will Sony counter?
Watch out for Black Friday 2016. Xbox One and Sony PS4 Black Friday deals will be incredible as the war is not just in features and games, but also in price.