Microsoft will no longer be announcing hardware sales figures
Microsoft has confirmed reports that it will no longer be announcing hardware sales in quarterly financial reports. Sales figures will still be announced, just much more infrequently.
Microsoft will be shifting focus from sales figures to console activity. This came to light when the latest financial quarter results were reported and there was no mention of hardware sales. Rather than looking solely at sales numbers, Microsofy will be tracking its monthly active user base going forward.
Microsoft had this to say:
"To better reflect the company’s strategy and ambitions to build best-in-class platforms and productivity services for a mobile-first, cloud-first world, Microsoft is changing the reporting of its financial results. This presented the opportunity for a fresh way to look at how we report on Xbox results. We have been delivering a service-centric approach for the Xbox business for some time and now have Xbox now available across Windows 10 devices. Our measurement for success is focused on engagement on Xbox as a key driver for monetization."
This is in line with what Phil Spencer, Head of Xbox, had to say at the GeekWire Summit earlier this month. Spencer was, as always, very candid when a fan asked if the Xbox One could catch up to the PS4 in sales:
"You know, I don't know..You know, the length of the generation..they [Sony] have a huge lead and they have a good product. I love the content, the games line-up that we have...I would never question the ability of our organization, but I'll say we're not motivated by beating Sony, we're motivated by gaining as many customers as we can."
The last numbers reported (in June) by VGChartz, had the Xbox One at 13 worldwide lifetime sales. It's probably safe to assume that it's now around 15 million consoles sold, which may put it about 11 million behind the PS4. It's important to remember that the Xbox One is still selling at a fantastic rate, it just pales in comparison to the record-breaking PS4.
Being in second place isn't necessarily a bad thing - as we saw with the PS3 last generation, it forces you to become the better product. So Microsoft's focus on user activity and its own brand means we should see exciting new IP that can only be found on Xbox. You can read about the shifting tides and why it's not all bad right here.
Microsoft will be hoping for some big sales in the coming months with exclusives Halo 5: Guardians and Rise of the Tomb Raider. So it's a fair assumption that we will hear some more figures from the company sometime in the new year, maybe in the March fiscal quarter.
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