Things You Should Know: XBox One

Today’s post is from Ypulse staffer Phil Savarese.

On May 21, Microsoft announced their much-anticipated next generation video game console: Xbox One. The console will be competing with Sony’s next-gen console: Play Station 4 (PS4) this coming holiday season, but it would not do the Xbox One justice to call it a “video game console.” Microsoft is making waves with gamers by instead marketing One as an “all-in-one entertainment system.” The console moves away from Xbox’s gaming roots, aiming instead to be an entertainment hub that focuses as much, if not more, on TV and sports as it does video games. Devout gamers might be criticizing the move, but with Millennials looking for products that help to streamline life Xbox One has the potential to be valued by a wider audience. The entire Xbox One release is something to be discussed, from its pre-announcement rumors to its post-announcement skeptics. Here’s how the Xbox One announcement was a Millennial event through and through:

Social Media Missteps

Since the gaming world was told that 2013 would bring the next generations of Xbox and PlayStation, they have been searching the internet for any information on the consoles. There were rumors that the console would require an internet connection at all times, which was not good news for gamers, who made their distaste for the idea well-known. In the wake of the reports and criticism, Microsoft employee Adam Orth took to Twitter to tell gamers that didn’t like the idea of an “always-on” console to “deal with it.” Microsoft put out an official statement apologizing for the staffers remarks, but for many shadows had been cast on Microsoft and their next console. The event exemplifies how social media can cause major press issues for brands who aren’t careful to play nicely with…

 
 

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The Newsfeed

“It[‘s] only about the music for me, nothing else dictates what I listen to, I either like it or I don't.”—Male, 28, WA

A new app is getting teens’ attention as it rises through the ranks of the new social apps to know, even surpassing Houseparty’s popularity—but the catch is it’s “piggyback[ing]” on Snapchat. Polly allows users to create anonymous surveys that they can send on Snapchat (there's that anonymity allure again), meaning many users may not have actually downloaded the Polly app, so they “could slip away if friends stop posting questions.” For now though, the app amassed 20 million users and 100 million answers last month, proving it’s one to keep an eye on. (TechCrunch)

Designers are taking to social media to “shame” the retailers ripping off their work. When Zoila Darton spotted a Forever 21 shirt eerily similar to the one she helped create to benefit Planned Parenthood, she posted a tweet to let the brand know their copycat didn’t go unnoticed—and quickly gained attention from fashion editors and others. This isn’t the first time pieces have been copied by Forever 21, but designers have a hard time taking legal recourse against the powerful company. Instead, social media posts are often their best bet. (NYTimes)

BeautyCon is continuing to take “Sephora and Coachella and smash it into one thing” to appeal to young consumers. At the latest L.A. event, 20,000 beauty fans came to meet their influencer idols and try out the latest makeup trends, surrounded by empowering slogans and messages—true to the brand’s idea that “beauty can be something beyond a concealer culture.” Of course, brands were there “to win over the new generation”—ChapStick Duo offered cotton candy while Rimmel London’s “slayground” gave attendees a chance to set down their makeup and enjoy a jungle gym and swing set.
(The New Yorker)

It turns out saving money might not be cord cutters’ top reason for switching to streaming. Instead, a recent Magid Associates survey found that “the attractions” of SVOD programming (aka their content) is their top reason for making the move, followed by the overall decline of TV-viewing among 18-24-year-olds. Cable companies are trying to reel The Post-TV Gen back in by offering lower-cost cable bundles (so-called “skinny bundles”), but stepping up their shows might be a better first step to reversing the “accelerating” trend of cutting the cord. (TheStreet)

Pokémon is reaching out to a new generation of trainers with its first app for preschool-aged kids. Pokémon Playhouse follows in the wake of the massively successful augmented reality app, Pokémon Go (which was so popular that we put together an entire infographic on it) but won’t be AR-based. Instead, Playhouse will tap into the collectibles trend by featuring favorite characters like Pikachu for kids to collect by completing activities. There will also be puzzles and more in the app’s “interactive park.” (Kidscreen)

“I'm literally listening to music any time it is socially acceptable.”—Female, 28, MN

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