It’s no secret that Microsoft and Sony are keen to conquer the gaming market, and sales in the run-up to Christmas will be closely analysed by both companies and the wider industry to see who wins this battle.
November 22nd saw the UK launch of the Xbox One, and within 18 days Microsoft had shifted two million consoles on these shores. The Playstation 4 surpassed these remarkable sales figures by managing to sell two million consoles in the UK in just 15 days after its release on November 29th.
However, in the US the Xbox One appears to be taking the lead. Data from InfoScout showed that over the Black Friday period, 31% of the console market share was given to the Xbox One, with the Playstation 4 taking just 15% of the market share. As a result of this poor performance, the Black Friday period actually saw more of the older Xbox 360s sold than PS4s.
Price considerations could be a factor in Sony’s dominance of the European market. The PS4 costs £349.99, with the Xbox One costing £429.99, an £80 difference. In the US, the price difference between the two consoles is less marked at $100, or around £60.
So while Microsoft is trumpeting its victory in the US markets, Sony is keen to point out that it has had more worldwide sales than Microsoft, as well as more sales in North America overall.
Exactly what these figures say about the future of games consoles is uncertain. Analysts say that while the competition between Microsoft and Sony is intense, the victor of this console war will be decided on the software gamers actually get to play on the devices. Although the Christmas battle is undoubtedly important for Micosoft and Sony, the real battle will be resolved in 2014, when consumers have a better idea of what games each device has to offer.
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