Sony’s popular PlayStation 4 console appears to be continuing its amazing momentum in terms of sales as Sony, the console’s maker, has announced that as of yesterday the company has shipped over 7 million units of the popular console. Since the console’s launch in mid november, only 5 months ago, they have managed to average over 1 million console sales per month. This does take into account the 1 million sold on the first day, but even if you take that number out, it puts the PS4 at 6 million units in 5 months, which still means over a million PlayStation 4 consoles sold per month, a pretty steady and consistent sales flow.
The strong sales of Sony’s PlayStation 4 are likely to also impact developers’ decisions when it comes to prioritizing for certain consoles, especially when you consider how much more well-received the PS4 has been compared to the Xbox One. There’s no doubt that the Xbox One is the best selling console that Microsoft has ever made, but it simply pales by comparison to the PlayStation 4. Estimates are putting the Xbox One’s sales around 3 to 4 million, which put it at around half that of the PlayStation 4, even though the PS4 appears to not be slowing down unlike its competitor. A lot of this has to do with Sony’s focus on gaming and improving the game experience and making it more relevant in today’s social and connected world. They also prioritized making sure that they could support 1080P natively in games, making the gaming experience better than many of the Xbox One’s lower-res games.
As we’ve been saying since before the launches, Sony’s strategy across the board has been smarter and more focused than Microsoft’s. Microsoft confused a lot of gamers with their E3 press conference and launch announcement of the Xbox One. They created a lot of uncertainty for gamers and ultimately hurt themselves more than Sony ever could have. In addition to that, Microsoft put far too much focus on being the center of the entertainment in the home without taking into consideration that many of their smart media and TV features would be lost on consumers outside of the US. Sony’s focus on making the console $399 versus Microsoft’s $499 price also affected prices globally as most global prices merely magnify the US prices by a factor of 2-3. A good example of that is simply looking at what people are paying for PS4s around the world.
That’s the other thing people are forgetting, Sony’s approach towards international console sales is effectively allowing users to buy and sell them in any country. There are no restrictions on where you can buy and play a PS4, unlike Microsoft’s Live service which limits users to Xbox Live service within approved countries. Sure, this probably allows for a better overall experience, but ultimately it also results in a lot of people never getting a chance or wanting to get a chance to buy the console to begin with.
When you take all of these things into account, it seems quite clear that Sony’s strategy from start to finish was far more refined and improved. They didn’t make many mistakes and I have a feeling that we’ll see a refresh of the PS4 by the end of the year to sweep up all of those people that either didn’t want a first generation device or wanted to wait until there was a clear winner. Right now, the thin and sleep PS4 really looks like the winner when the PS4 vs Xbox One conversation comes up.