Interested in learning what's next for the gaming industry? Join gaming executives to discuss emerging parts of the industry this October at GamesBeat Summit Next. Learn more.
Microsoft didn’t say how many Xbox 360s and Xbox Ones it sold last quarter, but it does point out that its online-gaming service is growing.
Xbox Live now has 39 million monthly active gamers, according to Microsoft’s quarterly financial report. That’s up 28 percent year-over-year, but this number also doesn’t really tell the whole story. Clearly, this means that Microsoft has 39 million people logging onto Live, but it doesn’t indicate in any way how many of those are paying Gold members. It did say that Live’s revenues were up 17 percent and game revenue climbed 66 percent thanks to Minecraft.
Another thing that Microsoft didn’t mention is how many Xbox systems it sold. What the company would say is that total Xbox hardware sales were down 17 percent year-over-year primarily due to slumping Xbox 360 sales. Normally, during the company’s quarterly report, it’ll mention how many Xbox One and Xbox 360 systems it has sold. For example, back in July, we wrote that Microsoft sold 1.4 million Xbox consoles during the three-month period comprising the company’s fourth quarter.
Microsoft made no such disclosure for its fiscal Q1. We’ve reached out to the company to ask if it can share those figures with us, but we can also look back and do a little math.
Microsoft confirmed 2.4 million Xbox systems were sold during its fiscal Q1 of 2015, and if we’re down 17 percent year-over-year, then that puts total Xbox sales at approximately 1.99 million if all things are equal. But the 17 percent drop is a revenue number, so you would have to factor that in because not every Xbox is sold at the same price. So the 1.99 number is very rough, and we’re hoping to get something more solid from Microsoft.
We’ll update this with any new information.
The dip in sales jives with what the monthly report from industry-tracking firm The NPD Group from the last several months that claims Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 sales have plummeted when compared to 2014.
The Xbox One has sold well compared to the Xbox 360, but it has lagged behind its competition from Sony. The PlayStation 4 is already at more than 25 million systems sold worldwide as of June, while estimates put the Xbox One at somewhere in the 15 million range.
Recently, Xbox boss Phil Spencer even commented on he’s unsure if the Xbox can catch up to the PlayStation.
“I don’t know,” said Spencer. “You know, the length of the generation — [Sony has] a huge lead, and they have a good product.”
To stay in the game, Microsoft has aggressively cut the price of its console and bundled it with attractive software. An early, alleged Black Friday sales leak from Dell claims that the company will offer an Xbox One bundled with the sci-fi shooter Gears of War Ultimate, an extra controller, and postapocalyptic role-playing game Fallout 4 all for just $300. That’s an insane deal considering Fallout 4 is probably the most anticipated release of the fall.
Microsoft was able to cut the price of the Xbox One to help it outsell the PlayStation 4 last November and December, which are the biggest months of the year for game sales by far. But with Sony cutting the price of the PS4 to $350, repeating that success may prove difficult for the Windows company.
GamesBeat's creed when covering the game industry is "where passion meets business." What does this mean? We want to tell you how the news matters to you -- not just as a decision-maker at a game studio, but also as a fan of games. Whether you read our articles, listen to our podcasts, or watch our videos, GamesBeat will help you learn about the industry and enjoy engaging with it. Learn more about membership.