OPINION: The immediate threats to retail from the PS4

Leigh Harris
OPINION: The immediate threats to retail from the PS4

We all know console sales get a shot in the arm with each generation, so what might retail have to fear from the looks of the new Playstation?

With rumours failing to be confirmed that there would be hard blocking of second-hand purchases in the PS4, Shane Stockwell's recent comments still hold up that there's no reason to panic unless Sony or Microsoft actually make a statement.

The streaming technology, however, might be cause for alarm, with all PS3 titles allegedly being able to be streamed onto the PS4 using GaiKai's technology.

There's no doubt the rush of hardware sales will be enjoyed as it is every Christmas that sees a console release, but the instant try-before-you-buy model of streaming for free then purchasing later has the potential to blunt retail sales of PS3 games for PS4 owners.

Fortunately, that market is likely to be incredibly small, but it does mean that titles like Diablo III and Watch Dogs are liable to have gamers already in the Playstation Store streaming the PS3 version to test it out and being a button press away from making the purchase for PS4. At least in the case of Watch Dogs, it'll evidently be hitting PS4 first, but the first step is getting people to use your delivery system, and what better way to do it than to offer free streaming?

In the mean time, however, there's no immediate threat to second-hand sales, hardware is bound to be a huge part of this year's retail experience and of course, it's very hard to download a Skylanders toy and of course, people still love their impulse-buy merch.

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Tags: Hardware , gaikai , streaming , playstation 4 , PS4 , digital downloads , diablo 3 , watch dogs

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