What’s the point of the Xbox One or Playstation 4?

I know people are going crazy over the Xbox One and the Playstation 4 to the point of buying them at midnight or paying hundreds of dollars more than they’re worth just to get their hands on one. And I have to ask, why? What’s the point of a game console any more?

The game console has morphed into a DVD/Blu Ray player, with Streaming Media apps, browsing and a whole slew of things that have nothing to do with gaming. So why waste the money on one instead of buying a fully fledged gaming rig that can do all of that and more? Microsoft and Sony want their devices to be these All in Wonder boxes, but wouldn’t buying a small PC be a better idea?

By the time you spend $600-700 on an Xbox you could easily build a desktop machine with the AMD 8 core 8350 at it’s core, put in a GTX 660 video card, have a few terabytes of hard drive space, Blu Ray player and have more than enough power to play games, stream movies and so much more. It just doesn’t seem the Xbox One offers anything new. Am I missing something here?

Plus, you can upgrade a PC. Want more power, add a second video card and go for SLI, or buy a bigger, more powerful card when it comes out. Need more space, just add it or plug in a drive. It’s not like a PC can’t use the same Xbox controller. I have two of them on my gaming rig.

Are the games for the console better? Between Steam, Origin and independent vendors the variety of games is simply staggering. Quite honestly, since I get almost all my games exclusively from Steam, as I’m sure most people do these days, it makes more sense to look into getting a Steam Box than an Xbox One.

So again, what am I missing here. People are going nuts for these consoles, but my gaming rig can  do everything of the Xbox and PS4 and then some. I don’t see how you can encode video on an Xbox, or capture music, or capture video, or write code, or rip DVDs, or update a blog, or log into a remote system, or host a Virtual Machine, or any one of the thousands of tasks we do daily and take for granted on a regular desktop machine. Hell, the iPad seems to do more than Xbox.

The Xbox and the Playstation seem neat, but compared to what you could build for the same price and use for much more, they sort of seem obsolete.

Help me out here, what’s their magic bullet?

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