Supply & Demand: PS4 Is Worth More Than Xbox One
In the run up to Christmas, can you get hold of an Xbox One or PS4, and how much will it cost you?
Published on Dec 5, 2013
Everything is worth what its purchaser will pay. That's the saying, anyway, and judging by the hiked prices of the PS4 and the Xbox One, this is certainly looking to be true.
So while you would scoff at the idea of paying £700 for an Xbox One, a desperate parent looking to get hold of the console before Christmas likely would. In fact, it could well have already happened.
With the concept of supply and demand businesses can get a better judge of the value of a product. That's not to be confused with its price - in the case of these consoles the RRP of £349.99 for PS4 and £429.99 for Xbox One - but instead what a product is worth.
We tracked a large number of sales on both the US and UK eBay sites, and while the prices for these two consoles continue to rise what is most interesting is that - despite the price differences - the PS4 is actually worth more than Xbox One.
PS4's On eBay UK
First off, let's look at the supply of the PS4 and the Xbox One. In most cases supply can be looked at in two ways: either the supply is low, so the demand is high - and so, too, is the price - or the supply is high and so demand is being met, or even exceeded.
In the latter's case this results in prices around or below the RRP of a product.
But eBay has a large number of both next-gen consoles available for sale, while the price - too - remains high.
This is because those with spare consoles - either they purchased an extra console with intent to sell or are looking to make a quick buck - are the ones supplying the demand, not retailers.
Traditional means of purchase have an extremely limited number of PS4s and Xbox Ones available, meaning if you want one of these consoles your only option is to pay over the odds.
Interestingly, eBay UK has around 750-800 Xbox Ones available for purchase, while the PS4 has a considerable amount more at about 2,000-2,100.
The supply of the PS4 is considerably higher due to the higher demand, as eBay sellers look to capitalise on the consoles popularity.
As a result the cost of the PS4 has risen considerably, its value becoming way over the standard RRP for the console.
Though the PS4 sold upwards of £550 - usually when supplied as a bundle or with a game - the standard price for just the console itself had an average of £475.
At the lower end of the scale the PS4 went for £435 and at the highest it went for £505, with the majority of auctions including 40 or more bids.
This puts the PS4 at about £125 its RRP, a huge increase to its value.
Xbox One's on eBay UK
Meanwhile the Xbox One still boosted its value, though not to such great heights. Inexplicably one Xbox One sold for £707.00, but this was an unusual blip.
The average for the Xbox One is around £520, with its lowest auction coming in at £495 - only £65 on top of the Xbox One's RRP - though the majority of auctions broke £500.
It's not unusual to see an Xbox One sell on eBay UK for £550, either, though quite often these are the Day One Edition consoles, which also come with a copy of FIFA 14.
This is where the comparison becomes a little skewed. Though the average of £520 only puts the Xbox One at £90 on top of its RRP, even including the FIFA 14 bundles, it's impossible to ignore the difference you're getting.
In essence the value of the Xbox One is increased by £50 with the addition of a free game. Though the console's RRP does not include the FIFA 14 addition, the Day One Edition does.
Like for like, the PS4 auctions that came with a bundled game sold for over £500, with Knack bundles at around £495-505 while Killzone: Shadow Fall PS4 bundles sell for £510-520+
In essence a like for like sale alongside the Xbox One would put the PS4's value at £150 on top of the RRP at least, while the Xbox One often manages little more than £100-110 on top of its RRP.
It's an interesting insight in the demand for the PS4 over its otherwise more expensive competitor.
PS4s & Xbox Ones On eBay US
As another example we decided to see what the Americans market was looking like for PS4s and Xbox Ones this Christmas and here it was much worse for the Xbox One.
There are around 3,500 Xbox Ones for sale on the US eBay, followed up by 4,900 PS4s. Though the PS4 had the lead on supply, it's fair to say there are plenty of consoles available.
This has had an effect on the value of the Xbox One. Since eBay US has many more Xbox Ones - almost all of which are new - the need to go through traditional retailers is negated somewhat.
As such Xbox Ones typically sell for around $580, not much more than its RRP of $499 in the US.
It's not unusual for an Xbox One to top $600 or slightly over, but as many sell for less.
This is particularly harsh when compared to the PS4, which seemingly sells for around the same price as an Xbox One on US eBay.
Though it's rarer for a PS4 to push over $600 it is still fairly common and the average selling price of the PS4 is still around $580-590 - an embarrassing revelation considering the US RRP of $399 for the PS4.
PS4s & Xbox Ones On Amazon
While eBay is perhaps the best test for valuing the market, Amazon Marketplace - which allows users to sell their own products for a set price - is also a handy comparison to make.
Here the price is set by the user themselves, so the market helps figure out the acceptable value when a middle ground is found.
It's here that Xbox One fairs a little better. Though it's not quite as easy to create an average since Amazon Marketplace almost always features a stupidly high price - in this case £999.99 - there is a general 'accepted' price.
For the Xbox One the lowest price is £580.00 with the price increasing to around £610.00 before it starts escalating excessing. This is with 11 consoles available.
The PS4, however, has 58 consoles available through Amazon Marketplace, with £495.00 as the lowest price. This hovers up to around £530 before reaching a large number of PS4s at £550, after which the cost increases sharply.
This is harder to evaluate due to the nature of the system, it is nonetheless interesting to see how the limited availability of the Xbox One on Amazon's Marketplace (with only 11 available through secondary sale) has increased the overall value of the console.
PS4 Is Worth More Than Xbox One
Ultimately it's clear there's a higher demand for the PS4 than the Xbox One.
Not only are more PS4s available for sale through secondary means (rather than direct from a retailer) than the Xbox Ones, but it still manages to maintain a higher value than the Xbox One.
Sales of the PS4 are considerably higher in value than the Xbox One, suggesting that consumers are willing to spend much more than RRP to get hold of a PS4 than they are of an Xbox One.
As stock for Christmas presents begins to dwindle it will be interesting to see how - if at all - this market pattern evolves, but we'll be sure to keep track of it.