In the battle of next-generation consoles, Sony’s PlayStation 4 has so far managed to keep well ahead of its rival Microsoft’s Xbox One, benefitting from a $100 lower price and a more open digital rights management policy.

The Xbox One will retail for $499, while the PlayStation 4 will be priced at $399. Microsoft eventually backtracked on its controversial DRM policies and used game restrictions, which made Sony Computer Entertainment America CEO Jack Tretton (photo) note drily that the tech giant “finally got the message.”

Sony: Microsoft Finally Got the Message

Tretton was quoted by IGN as saying that Sony spent more than 5 years listening to consumers’ feedback in developing the PlayStation 4. The Sony boss also commented on the fact that Microsoft gave up its restrictions in response to fans’ anger saying that “it’s better late than never.”

According to Tretton, Sony officials had no idea that their E3 conference last month would be such a success, as they were unsure if the PS4 price and features would be able to stack up against Microsoft’s own console. Both tech giants revealed their new consoles on the same day at the E3, but while Microsoft’s event left gaming fans disappointed, Sony’s was very successful, triggering applause and cheers from the audience.

The Sony CEO also denied reports that the E3 event and the PlayStation 4 price were changed to make their console more competitive against the Xbox One, saying that such decisions are normally made months in advance. Tretton also said Sony went for a lower price for the PS4 because it learned from the mistakes it made with the PS3, which launched with quite a hefty price tag.

PS4 Eye deliberately removed?

Tretton’s comments came amid reports that Sony gave up plans to include a camera add-on with the PlayStation 4 precisely in order to beat Microsoft’s Xbox One price. Sources said Sony’s originally planned price for the PS4 was $499 and after sacrificing the PlayStation 4 Eye, they were able to cut $100 off.

Sony will be retailing a Kinect bundle separately, for $60, but according to gaming experts, without the camera, a major feature of the console’s DualShock controller – the LED move tracker, will become largely useless.

It remains to be seen how this will affect the competition between the two consoles in the long run. So far, the PS4 is in the lead, with some impressive pre-order figures reported by both Sony and by retailers.

Do you think the built-in Kinect will help Xbox One take the lead? And is the feature worth the extra $100? Let us know in the comments below.

[Image via cnet]