Xbox One, PlayStation 4 Sell 2 Million – Who Will Win the War?

Xbox One

Xbox One sales have reached the 2 million mark in just 18 days, according to Microsoft, which equals the success of the PlayStation 4, making the winner of the console war as yet undetermined.

For those counting, Xbox One sales work out to a daily average of 111,111 consoles sold.  At its peak, the Xbox One was ordered 1000 times per minute on Amazon.com.  Over 83 million hours have been logged playing games, watching TV and using apps since its launch on November 22nd.

Microsoft’s vice president of strategy and marketing, Yusuf Mehdi, reports that the Xbox One is sold out at the majority of retailers in the 13 markets in which it was released.

The numbers reported by Microsoft are similar to those of its main competitor, the Sony PlayStation 4, which sold 2.1 million consoles in roughly the same amount of time as the Xbox One, making the ultimate winner of this war unpredictable.  The PlayStation 4 was released on November 15 in 32 markets.  In dollars, its sales break down to at least 1.8 million dollars being spent on game consoles since the first launch three-and-a-half weeks ago.

The war of the consoles is likely to be decided by which manufacturer can make the systems and place them in warehouses and stores for purchase.  Due to the high demand this holiday season, since November 15, eBay has sold more than 80,000 Xbox Ones and PlayStation 4’s at considerably more than the manufacturer’s suggested retail prices of $399 and $499 respectively.

It appears that both systems have had equal success in launching their products, and the high sales numbers are expected to remain until the end of the holiday season.  The final winner of the contest will be which console manages to maintain sales once the hardcore gaming devotees have purchased their new units and the products are sold to the mass market.

According to analyst Colin Sebastian of R.W. Baird, sales of each are expected to top 3 million sold by the end of the year and a cumulative amount of 5 to 6 million sold by the end of the first quarter of 2014.

More than just a gaming console, Xbox One offers a television guide and highlights trending movies in Netflix, Amazon and other apps.  Microsoft’s vision of the system is of a family entertainment center that also offers music listening, photo viewing and Skype.

Although the title of first runner-up is still in question, the loser of the gaming console war appears to have already been decided.  Nintendo’s latest console, the Wii U is estimated to have sold only 150,000 systems in November, which represents a decline of 65 percent from last November.

Nintendo reported sales of 3.91 million at the end of October, which translated to less than 500,000 consoles sold between April 1 and October 1.  The low sales have made the Wii U one of the least-sold gaming system during the last nine years.

Although Nintendo is standing by its projected sales number of 8.54 million systems sold by year end, analysts believe the goal will not be reachable without lowering the price of the gaming console once again.  Currently, the Wii U sells for $300 and offers free games with the purchase of the system as part of three bundles available.

Whether Xbox One or the PlayStation 4, both with sales over 2 million to date, win the war, the ultimate victor will be game designers and code writers whose products will be in high demand by both manufacturers.

By Jennifer Pfalz

Sources:
Boston
El 33t
Forbes
CNBC