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Quick fire poll: will the PS5/XB2 have a disc drive?

Will the drive thrive?  

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Reading the HMV deathwatch thread it got me wondering how long we have left buying games on a disc. Are console manufacturers that indebted to the high street stores anymore? 

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 I voted yes, but wouldn't be bothered if it didn't have one. I think the first console manufacturer to release a new unit without a drive would be a brave one, and risk public backlash. Would certainly be interesting though, in that bargains would disappear overnight with forum trading and other similar avenues gone.

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Yes. FIFA 19 currently has a 75%/25% split in favour of physical in the UK. Disc is still going to be the predominant format for full price games for a while yet, and that's without even getting into offering an internet only device in countries with poor infrastructure.

 

I could see a machine without a disc drive being released as a cheaper alternative but it's still far too early to make it the only option.

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Yes.  There is no obvious and easy replacement for gifting games digitally yet, and too many of us want physical as it stands, and both MS and Sony have pushed their consoles as entertainment machines with ability to play both media (DVD / Blu Ray) and backwards compatibility - especially MS.

 

Perhaps if 4K blue ray thingys fail (which they might) then the following generation will drop the drive though.

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Presumably they'll also want to sell these consoles in countries where the internet infrastructure just isn't in place to cope with the increasingly massive file sizes of modern games. Hell, there’s parts of the UK that aren’t.

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Of course they'll have a disc drive. There's absolutely no way in shitting hell the new consoles wouldn't.

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1 minute ago, Meh said:

Of course they'll have a disc drive. There's absolutely no way in shitting hell the new consoles wouldn't.

 

The next thing people will suggest is that computers don't have disc drives any more!

 

Oh, wait.

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I don't think this will happen as drives are quite cheap, but a cheaper console with the same on board storage but no disc drive may be appealing to some, but I don't see the cost saving being enough to drive sales or make it worthwhile having a dual production line. 

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Just now, Gotters said:

I don't think this will happen as drives are quite cheap, but a cheaper console with the same on board storage but no disc drive may be appealing to some, but I don't see the cost saving being enough to drive sales or make it worthwhile having a dual production line. 

You dont need dual production lines to produce build variants. However i think this it moot because I think that they will come with Disc Drives fitted as standard.

 

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I'm not sure they'll be remotely worried about people with slow Internet connections when the inevitable time does come that a console is launched without a disc drive. Some games now require day one updates of sometimes 30gb-50gb and nobody seems to bat an eyelid about that. Up until a few months back a 30gb update would have took me about 6 months. 

 

Like others have said I can see companies launching a console with a disc drive and a slightly cheaper one without, maybe with a bigger HD? 

 

It will certainly be interesting this time around as it was talked about before the Xbox One launched wasn't it? Add a few years onto that and who knows

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What if the machines come without a drive but you can buy one as an add-on?

 

I don't see that happening (I expect they'll have internal drives) but it would be a way for platform holders to test the water.

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10 minutes ago, Meh said:

Not exactly the same thing, though, is it?

 

Is it different in a significant way? Computers binned drives when the infrastructure for digital distribution was good enough to render discs largely unnecessary. And, when Apple did it first, everyone said it was a silly thing to do. Then everyone realised it wasn't and actually disc drives are a pointless anachronism. Why isn't that the case for consoles now?

 

The thing you (and many others) are ignoring is that it's far better for Microsoft and Sony to do digital distribution. They rake in hundreds of millions from game sales through their stores. If they can remove the drive to push that profit up significantly without losing too many sales they definitely will.

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8 minutes ago, ChrisN said:

 

Is it different in a significant way? Computers binned drives when the infrastructure for digital distribution was good enough to render discs largely unnecessary. And, when Apple did it first, everyone said it was a silly thing to do. Then everyone realised it wasn't and actually disc drives are a pointless anachronism. Why isn't that the case for consoles now?

 

The thing you (and many others) are ignoring is that it's far better for Microsoft and Sony to do digital distribution. They rake in hundreds of millions from game sales through their stores. If they can remove the drive to push that profit up significantly without losing too many sales they definitely will.

 

You comparison to Apple isn't the best. File sizes on their devices aren't exactly huge - and this makes it easier to stomach for countries with shit internet. The fact is, people don't want to sit and wait a thousand years for their games to download, and so at the moment it makes zero sense for these machines to have no disc drive - especially with the rising file size of games to over 100gb in some instances.

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19 minutes ago, Giraffetastic said:

What if the machines come without a drive but you can buy one as an add-on?

 

I don't see that happening (I expect they'll have internal drives) but it would be a way for platform holders to test the water.

 

That's a gigantic step back.

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28 minutes ago, NEG said:

They'll be switching to cartridges.

 

honestly, I think that would be kind of cool in a way - but these devices aren't just for playing games anymore.

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2 minutes ago, Meh said:

 

honestly, I think that would be kind of cool in a way - but these devices aren't just for playing games anymore.

So you're saying it'll have a UMD drive so you can watch movies too?

 

:ph34r:

 

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8 minutes ago, Meh said:

 

honestly, I think that would be kind of cool in a way - but these devices aren't just for playing games anymore.

 

If they do what they did with copying the Wii I do think there's a 50% chance Sony will make PS5 a portable hybrid. Discs/cartridge were always a given for another gen. Parts of the world, including Japan, practically demand and rely on physical.

 

In another ten years it's harder to say. I've gone full digital for the Switch more because it's bloody frustrating to not being able to buy the releases I want thanks to all the limited run bullshit (making it impossible unless a millionaire), rather then preferring digital. Forced transition via inconvenience will definitely be a thing.

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2 minutes ago, JohnC said:

So you're saying it'll have a UMD drive so you can watch movies too?

 

:ph34r:

 

 

Yes. PS5 UMDHD4K confirmed.

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19 minutes ago, Meh said:

The fact is, people don't want to sit and wait a thousand years for their games to download

They'd rather wait a thousand years for the discs to install instead :P

 

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There will not be a PS5 or an Xbox 2. 

 

Apple realised this after the iPhone X.  They expected a new hardware iteration to attract customers to spend a grand on a new phone and were surprised when people voted with their feet and stayed with the phone they had.  A few years ago you'd be itching for your contract to end in order to get a new phone, but now people are happy with the ones they have and they stay with it for longer.  The industry is starting to understand that people don't have unlimited money and when they don't see a great difference between the new product and the old one, they don't need to buy because what they already have is enough for them.  

 

The same is true of consoles.  The idea of a console is that it plays games like a top of the range computer but costs a lot less.  Console manufacturers lose money on the consoles and make money on the games.  But consoles have been creeping up in price over the generations.  When the 3DO launched at £399 everyone thought that was ludicrous, but the PS3 launched at £425 in the UK and every price increase inches you away from the whole point of a console and towards PC prices. The market needs a new generation of console that blows the old ones out of the water, in the way that PSOne wowed megadrive owners.  It's not possible to do this because the increase in quality is less noticable with every iteration.  Digital Foundry may be able to see the difference between an PS4 and XboxOne, and they can use graphs to demonstrate how a PS4Pro and XboxX are better, but my eyes don't really see it.  Ordinary people, the mass market, don't see it.  IN any case, ,most people don't have 4K TVs and the adoption of UltraHD has been very slow compared to HD. 

 

When TV's moved from SD to HD, a big screen HDTV was a couple of grand.  As they became the standard type of TV, the prices fell and most people have a big TV these days. The HDTV became an essential purchase and 4K hasn't done that yet.  It will happen as prices fall and tech gets better but Most people don't care enough about Ultra HD to make that happen quickly.  Therefore a great deal of the benefit of a next gen console won't even be visible to the customer.

 

It's like when the 360 came out and I tried Dead Or Alive in a store that had it set up on a standard def TV, it just looked like a standard Xbox game, only with text that was too small to read. Until everyone has a 4KTV nothing in a next-gen console today will blow people away.  The idea of a box under the TV with a controller isn't going to appeal to the mass market for whom a PS4 is enough. Things like VR and new ideas, new directions are what is needed, because we all have a box under the Tv and a controller already and we are happy with it.

 

Should the console manufacturers be able to make something that really does shake up the market, producing graphics that really do represent a massive leave forward, the price of such a device would be so expensive that this would open the door to a PC manufacturer creating a modern day Steam Machine, ridiculously high spec, same price as console, far cheaper games, and much more versatile.  

 

Console gaming is dead.

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35 minutes ago, ChrisN said:

The thing you (and many others) are ignoring is that it's far better for Microsoft and Sony to do digital distribution. They rake in hundreds of millions from game sales through their stores. If they can remove the drive to push that profit up significantly without losing too many sales they definitely will.

Yeah exactly. They might even want to sell a drive-less variant at a significant markdown (more than the value of the drive itself) just to encourage this behaviour. Cheaper drive-less variants or an optional USB disc drive to bridge the gap seem like good bets for the next gen, with the one after being 100% disc-free.

 

Don't MS already have that plan to let you hand in your discs in exchange for a digital download license? Where did I see that? With that level of convenience people will be much more willing to let go of their disc drives.

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