I have been wondering whether or not a retailer would wait for the rumors about the upcoming consoles to be confirmed before commenting. Gamestop has decided not to wait that long.
Gamestop has stated that they believe customers will “snub” any new machine that restricts play of pre-owned games. They cited surveys of their most active customers, and given that Gamestop makes almost half of its actual profit off the sale of previously-owned video games, it seems safe to say that they know what they are talking about.
Matt Hodges, a spokesman for the company, stated,
We know the desire to purchase a next-generation console would be significantly diminished if new consoles were to prohibit playing pre-owned games, limit portability or not play new physical games
As a bit of economic evidence of this, Gamestop’s stock price actually dropped after Microsoft’s no-comment comment about the rumors of their upcoming undesirable features. That stock price drop was larger than the overall stock gains the company managed over the entirety of last year, so this is not just a retailer crying over spilt milk.
Gamestop is a major retailer and one of the last dedicated specifically to video gaming. It would spell bad times for them if Microsoft and Sony decided to cut into their profits so heavily for what seems to be a security measure that would almost certainly hurt their profits more than help.