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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Millennial News Feed

Quote of the Day: "My favorite place to shop online is Sephora, because I love high end makeup and I love reading about what's new and watching tutorials on how it works.” –Female, 26, MA

We’ve seen everyone from food startups to fast-food chains label their food “artisanal” to appeal to Millennials—and there is good reason. It turns out there is generation gap when it comes to consumers’ reaction to “artisanal” and “craft.”  Millennials are more likely than older consumers to say that the labels “handmade/handcrafted, “craft,” and “small batch” tell them a product is high quality, and also more likely to say that descriptors like “artisan/artisanal” have some influence on their purchases. (MediaPost)

To sell wine to Millennials, brands have had to drop the exclusivity and embrace a more unpretentious attitude. Sparkling wine brand Chandon is relying on Instagram to get their bubbly message across to young females, making it their top social platform, over Pinterest. Their colorful, summertime images, featuring captions like “Today calls for Rosé,” are a part of their effort to get sparkling wine “out of the holiday rut.” (Digiday)

Older generations who hear about anonymous apps like Whisper and YikYak have one main question: why? Question and answer site Ask.fm’s recent study asked them, and found that 40% of 13-18-year-olds said anonymity online allows them to talk about difficult topics—only 4% said they would talk about the same things if their name was being used. (IBT)

New parents will do just about anything to get their kid(s) to go to sleep, as one self-published book is proving. The picture book The Rabbit Who Wants to Fall Asleep made the Amazon bestseller list by claiming to put children straight to sleep. Sales skyrocketed quickly, going from selling just 324 copies on August 16th, to 29,000 at the end of last week. It’s rumored that Random House has bought the rights to the miracle book. (Publisher’s Weekly)

Restoration Hardware is going after the teens “who ha[ve] everything.” Their new high-end post-childhood line RH Teen includes chandeliers, and fine art photography, and the brand hopes to capture young consumers as they are finding their own identity and becoming independent as decorators of their space. Unlike some brands, who are co-creating their products and marketing with young consumers, Restoration chose to launch RH Teen without focus groups or studies. (WSJ)

According to Pew, a third of Millennials frequently use their phones in public for “no particular reason,” and 13% say they frequently use their mobile devices to avoid interacting with other people. (Queue the “anti-social Millennial” pieces.) But another study might shed some more light on their “for no reason” phone use: 60% believe their smartphones enhances their leisure time. The research hypothesizes that young consumers are using phones for moments of “micro-leisure” throughout the day. (Washington PostSocialTimes)

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