I think people miss something important about Microsoft and their always on threat... we like to think that "well they'll lose big time money and Sony will dominate the console cycle."
But there is one caveat.
We buy these systems to play GAMES, and game developers care only about SELLING games to MAKE MONEY.
So here is how I see things going down:
Microsoft forces always on on it's consumer base. Some will balk, some will still say what's the big deal.
Resell value of Xbox games plummets, damaging used game companies and forcing people to pay full price for new titles.
(Here is where it gets interesting)
The Gaming industry sees a rise in PROFITS due to the larger sales of new titles and lack of the used resale loophole. Resale and piracy of PS4 titles makes that console less appealing to developers who only care about the bottomline.
Call of Duty is the first major title to move to exclusive Xbox due to this.
It will still sell MILLIONS of copies, since most of it's players already use internet to play multiplayer.
Other companies follow suit, preferring to roll the dice with the Xbox knowing that for all its sqawking and belly aching, gamers have an itch that needs scratching, and the dwindling PS4 titles worth playing won't be enough to keep people from giving in and buying Always on Xboxes because PC gaming is still too complicated/costly for the average consumer who doesn't want to deal with OS's and Drivers and Memory and graphics cards and other such potential issues.
3 or 4 years from now, most households will have some basic form of wifi or internet that is always on anyway (nobody cares about undeveloped nations since they don't contribute much to the gaming industry profits anyways.
People will eventually forget why they ever cared about always on because it becomes the norm.
Sony eventually moves to Always on to woo back third party developers to increase and revive their ailing stable of titles. After all, he said that the PS4 will not "NEED" to be always online... not that it CAN'T or WON'T.
That's one possible way things can go down, and I'm not quite confident it won't happen this way. Sure, us hardcore game loving types seem to care about always on, but there's an extremely large casual/mainstream audience of kids, ignorant parents, and people who just don't give a frak about this "controversy" that won't know or care or be deterred from having another Xbox (their current console of choice that is familiar to them) and those are the people Microsoft might be thinking of and who will make Always Online consoles par for the course.