Phil Harrison Says Sony and Microsoft Are Not Broadening The Gaming Audience, Unlike Nintendo with The Switch


If you've been following the game industry for the past ten years, chances are you've repeatedly stumbled upon Phil Harrison. The executive has been with Sony from 1992 to 2008, then he had brief work relationships with Atari and Gaikai before joining Microsoft in 2012; he left the Windows company in 2015.

During GameLab in Barcelona, Phil Harrison was featured in a video interview with GameReactor. He didn't shy away from commenting on the console scene at all, as you can read below.

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I think Sony has done a great job in making PlayStation 4 very popular in the world. What I wonder about and maybe worry about a little bit is that (both Microsoft and Sony) are they growing the market? Are they building and investing in the content and broadening the experiences to bring in more players? It looks to me, from the public announcements at least, that they are increasingly going for the same kind of core, hardcore gamer. Whereas the Nintendo Switch, I think, really has the opportunity to play to a wider audience. It's going to be really interesting how the market dynamics play out over the next three or four years in console.

He then expanded on a particular built-in advantage of the Switch from his own family's experience.

I can only answer from my own experience. With two boys, eight and six, the Switch is definitely the console of choice in the house. My eldest son plays a lot of The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild and together they play a lot of Mario Kart 8 Deluxe. I think the Switch will continue to be the number one console in our house for a period of time.

But, my eldest son also plays FIFA and Forza, he is getting more and more into the more advanced console games. Still, the second screen ability of the Nintendo Switch is surprisingly useful; even though we're lucky to have more than one TV in our house, there are many homes that don't.

I think that's going to be a really major benefit for many, many people.

So far, Nintendo has been really successful with the Switch console. Do you agree with Phil Harrison that it can keep the pace and possibly even draw in more gamers? Let us know in the comments.