Turns out Xbox and PlayStation aren’t into a little friendly competition

Google, Amazon, and Apple aren’t the only ones manipulating markets...


October 1, 2019

In a new study, faculty from several universities found that anti-competitive product recommendations might not be limited to search giants, according to Recode

The study shows that Xbox 360 and PlayStation — owned by Microsoft and Sony, respectively — have the power to decide which companies and games succeed. 

It’s like playing against the computer…   

…in that you never win. 

When you use an online video game marketplace like Xbox 360 or PlayStation, chances are, the recommended products and games aren’t visible because they have the best ratings or the highest sales. They’re there because the platform thinks they’ll help it win. At capitalism. 

Featured games are typically pay-to-get-played: They cough up some cash to get on the platform. They pay more for better visibility (which leads to higher sales). And even though they owe a percentage of their revenue to the Microsofts of the world, these games are selling way more than they would if they were on their own.

Anti-competitive behavior is like an MMO 

The biggest online marketplaces (cough Amazon, Google, Apple cough) have been called out and investigated for this kind of anti-competitive behavior. This study shows that they’re not the only ones playing the game.

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