Sony vs. Microsoft: Fight to Become the Final Boss of Console

Sony vs. Microsoft: Fight to Become the Final Boss of Console | Mr. Business Magazine

I remember getting excited as a kid to play games like Super Mario and Contra for 10 rupees an hour at a gaming booth near my house. It took a lot of negotiations and courage to get 10 rupees from my parents for something considered a bad influence at the time (and even today by some)—Gaming. While 10 rupees does not sound much today, the amount meant a lot more back then, especially because I wasn’t the one earning it.

The gaming console looked nothing like the consoles we see today. The size of the console was such that it’d take two grown men if you were to successfully move that chunky, bright-colored piece of block from one place to another. However, the blueprint was more or less the same as modern consoles. It had a big screen in the middle, a few buttons, and one element that resembled a gear stick, today popularly known as Joystick.

Since those days, the console industry has evolved drastically. One of the most significant contributions to this console progression was the PlayStation and the Xbox rivalry of Sony vs. Microsoft. While there is also a not-so-secret third player called Nintendo Switch, Sony vs. Microsoft has been arguably a more popular talking point. And we are going to continue that tradition today.

Xbox vs. PlayStation

While both Sony and Microsoft brands with significant global presence, the fight between Sony vs. Microsoft soon turned into Xbox vs. PlayStation. While Microsoft ranks much higher (#22) on the list of Global Top 100 Brands compared to Sony (#218), that isn’t representative of Sony vs. Microsoft rivalry in the gaming industry. Sony, with its PlayStations and Microsoft Xbox, continue to push each other to reign supreme in the gaming world. First, we are going to take a look at the history of PlayStation and Xbox products:

Sony PlayStation History

Sony vs. Microsoft: Fight to Become the Final Boss of Console | Mr. Business Magazine

1. PlayStation 1

When Sony launched the PlayStation in December 1994 in Japan, it quickly soared to become the first-ever video game console that reached 100 million units in sales. PS1 highlighted the fact that Sony was here to stay. The brand soon expanded its presence by Launching PS1 outside of Japan in European and North American markets.

The most appealing thing in the first edition of the PlayStation, technology-wise, was its 3D graphics, CD-ROM drive, and a gaming library that catered to the vast majority of gamers worldwide. 

Popular Games: Final Fantasy VII and Metal Gear Solid.

2. PlayStation 2

Sony launched the PS2 in the year 2000 and it became one of the best-selling game consoles in history. It featured a new Emotion Engine CPU and 32MB of system RAM along with 4MB of video RAM. It was one of the first consoles that was compatible with DVDs for playing games or even watching films. It allowed USB connectivity and users could install a 40GB hard drive (over and above the 8MB memory card). Additionally, it also featured backward compatibility with the OG PlayStation.

Star games: Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas and Gran Turismo 3.

3. PlayStation 3

PS3 was released in 2006 and had powerful hardware that supported the Blu-ray disk format and an HDMI Output. It used Nvidia’s RSX Reality Synthesizer GPU (256MB VRAM at 550MHz) and a 20GB internal hard drive. The PS3 with its PlayStation Network (PSN) allowed players to connect with friends and access digital content.

Star Games: The Last of Us and Uncharted

4. PlayStation 4

At the time of release, PS4 was much more powerful compared to other consoles it was competing against in the market. It rocked an 8-core AMD x86-64 Jaguar CPU and an integrated AMD Radeon GPU. It was revolutionary in the way it handled games where it was on par with high-end computers in terms of power. What made it stand out more were its features such as compatibility with Headsets, mics, S/ PDIF optical port, and the ability to upload and share game clips.

Star Games: Until Dawn and Uncharted 4

5. PlayStation 5 (PS5)

PS5, Sony’s latest product, was another leap for the ever-successful Product lineup. The PS5 was released in 2020 and has fast SSD, ray tracing capabilities, and an immersive DualSense controller. 

Star Games: Demon’s Souls and Spider-Man: Miles Morales.

Sony vs. Microsoft: Fight to Become the Final Boss of Console | Mr. Business Magazine

Microsoft Xbox History

1. Xbox

Sony vs. Microsoft in the console world started in 2001 when Microsoft launched the original Xbox. It was an important step into the console market as it geared up to compete directly with Sony’s PlayStation 2 and Nintendo’s GameCube. The Xbox featured robust online gaming capabilities through Xbox Live and introduced iconic franchises like “Halo.”

2. Xbox 360

In 2005, Microsoft released the Xbox 360, a console that took online gaming by storm with the Xbox Live. Compared to the original Xbox, the 360 was minimal and featured a vibrant library of games. The Xbox 360’s Kinect accessory brought motion-sensing gameplay to the forefront.

Star Games: Gears of War and Mass Effect.

3. Xbox One

The Xbox One was released in 2013 and marked Microsoft’s transition towards an all-in-one entertainment system. It integrated features like voice commands and television capabilities. While it faced strong competition from Sony’s PlayStation 4, it introduced backward compatibility, cloud gaming, and exclusive games.

Star Games: Halo 5 and Forza Motorsport.

4. Xbox Series X and Series S

Microsoft’s latest consoles, the Xbox Series X and Series S, launched in 2020, introducing next-gen gaming experiences with powerful hardware. These consoles prioritize backward compatibility, fast load times, and the Xbox Game Pass subscription service.

Star Games: Halo Infinite and Fable

Sony vs. Microsoft: Latest Notable Events 

1. Microsoft’s Activision Blizzard Acquisition Timeline

Those active in the online tech world know that Microsoft, Activision Blizzard, Acquisition, Sony— these are some of the words that made an appearance in every second tech-related piece on the internet lately. If you are out of the loop on what the deal is, let us tell you everything from start to finish how the Sony vs. Microsoft rivalry has been heating up.

Sony vs. Microsoft: Fight to Become the Final Boss of Console | Mr. Business Magazine

In 2020, Microsoft believed it lacked a presence on the mobile platforms. To remedy this, the CEO of Microsoft Gaming Phil Spencer shortlisted some companies to buy along with numerous developers who had multi-platform expertise. It turned out, the shortlisted companies were not enough to fulfill Microsoft’s requirement, and it needed a bigger fish.

In January 2022, Microsoft officially announced the $68.7 billion acquisition, cited as the most expensive gaming acquisition of all time.

In May 2022, New York City filed a suit against Activision Blizzard due to various reasons. The court was concerned that the deal was purposefully undervalued, and it would allow Kotick to escape liability and accountability in its ongoing suits filed against Activision Blizzard.

In August 2022, Saudi Arabia became the first country to approve the acquisition. Due to its large stake in Activision Blizzard through the Public Investment Fund, it was beneficial for Saudi Arabia. The projection was that it would earn Saudi close to $1 billion.

In September 2022, the UK competition regulator Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) called for a review of Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard. The investigation soon entered the second stage, as the CMA was concerned about PlayStation’s struggle in the acquisition.

On October 4, the EU trading bloc launched its investigation to analyze the impacts of the deal on the industry as a whole. The investigation had a deadline of November 8. On 5th October, CMA launched its investigation. The preliminary finding was that “the merged entity’s incentive to foreclose Sony may be considerably stronger than suggested by the parties.”

In November 2022, Bobby Kotick remained optimistic about the deal’s future in an open letter to employees, stating that the deal would help Activision Blizzard maintain its place in the competitive space.

In December 2022, FTC created a stalemate situation that included a four-person panel and one democratic member, in supporting the deal on December 5. The panel voted to sue the block deal on December 9.

In January 2022, Google and Nvidia also entered the playground. Google said Microsoft’s introduction of its mobile app store and the Activision Blizzard titles as “Microsoft Exclusive” could harm Google Play’s revenue. In the same month, the CMA extended its investigation deadline to April.

In February 2023, the EU issued Microsoft with a formal antitrust warning. It was also reported that CMA was planning on blocking the deal.

In March 2023, a move was suggested by the CMA that meant it was unlikely that the EU would demand an asset dump to approve the deal. Later, the CMA reversed its decision.

On 28th April, the CMA officially blocked the deal, citing cloud gaming as the main reason.

In May 2023, Microsoft started gearing up to appeal the CMA’s decision to potentially overturn it. Some said Microsoft was considering taking Activision Blizzard products off the UK markets, nicknamed Mrexit. EU finally decided to approve the deal.

Around June and July, the FTC filed for a preliminary injunction against the acquisition. Around the same time, a judge officially blocked the deal until the court decided on the injunction approval.

As the contractual deadline approached, a California judge denied the FTC’s preliminary injunction, prompting the FTC to launch its appeal the next day which it lost on the 17th of July. In September 2022, the CMA provisionally approved the deal.  After the CMA approval, Microsoft announced it hopes to approve the deal on 13th October. On the same day, the CMA finally gave the deal a green signal.

After all of this, one blockade remains for Microsoft: The FTC is in the process of appealing the 9th Circuit Court’s decision to deny its injunction to block the deal, as it plans to restart the case three weeks after the decision.

2. Sony Makes a Deal with Microsoft

Activision makes popular games like Call of Duty and Candy Crush. Call of Duty, in particular, took center stage between Sony vs. Microsoft as both brands kept slinging mud at each other.

After CMA recommended a second phase investigation, Microsoft said Xbox would get Call of Duty on day one of release and it would not have an effect on the game’s launch on PlayStation. It was alleged that Xbox would offer Call of Duty to PlayStation beyond the current contract.

On 7th September, CEO Jim Ryan raised a concern with that plan and called the offer an inadequate solution on so many levels. He emphasized how Microsoft’s offer impacts gamers globally and how Sony wants to guarantee the best Call of Duty experience.

With more and more scrutiny from the CMA, both Xbox and PlayStation put out more arguments to have the deal their way. Xbox said: “While Sony may not welcome increased competition, it can adapt and compete.” Microsoft President and Vice Chairman, Brad Smith, also said the Activision acquisition was fair because PlayStation has more exclusive games.

In the fierce rivalry of Sony vs. Microsoft, the former feared that Microsoft would make Call of Duty an “Xbox exclusive” and wasn’t too keen on signing the deal. However, after the dust had settled, Sony and Microsoft eventually agreed to a 10-year deal to keep Call of Duty on PlayStation after the Activision Blizzard acquisition. The deal was said to be a “binding agreement.”

FAQ: Xbox Series X or PlayStation 5, which is better?


The Xbox Series X has a more powerful GPU and a slightly faster CPU.

Exclusive Games:

The PS5 has more exclusive games. Namely, God of War: Ragnarok, Horizon Forbidden West, and Gran Turismo 7.

Subscription Service:

The Xbox has GamePass and a Netflix-esque subscription service that allows you to access a wide range of old and new titles.


Between the interfaces of Sony vs. Microsoft, the Xbox interface is simple and easy to understand. On the other hand, the PS5 Interface is unique, but it will take you some time to get used to it.

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