The PlayStation 4 was the highest selling console in the month of June, extending its run over the Xbox One and Nintendo Wii U to eight consecutive months.
Sony, which has sold the most consoles every month since November 2015, did not offer any statement other than to confirm the report on sales data issued by the NPD Group. PS4 sales have dominated for most of its life, but despite its ever-growing lead, U.S console sales saw a big drop year-over-year. With $181.5 million in sales (including PS4, Xbox One, and Wii U numbers) last month, that marks a 42 percent drop compared to the $313.1 million last June.
Due to lagging so far behind PS4 sales, Microsoft recently switched its marketing focus from consoles sold to hours spent gaming, and to that end, Xbox’s Chief Marketing Officer Mike Nichols said June was a historic month for that statistic.
“Following a monumental E3, in June 2016, gaming hours on Xbox One reached a new milestone with more than 1.2 billion hours logged, which more than doubles gaming hours at the same point in time last year and makes it the highest we’ve ever seen for the platform to date.”
The drop in Xbox One and PS4 sales year-over-year could be attributed to both Microsoft and Sony either announcing or hinting at new consoles. At E3 in June, Microsoft announced it would be releasing both a slim version of its current system, the Xbox One S, as well as an iteration of the Xbox One, currently code-named Project Scorpio. Project Scorpio is scheduled to arrive during the holidays of 2017. Microsoft announced it will come packed with 6 terabytes of GPU performance, 8 CPU cores, and 320 GB/s of memory bandwidth. While few specific details have been revealed beyond that, it is rumored that the system will be an evolution of the Xbox One, rather than a brand new console itself. The goal with this iteration is to bring 4K gaming, something that is currently only possible on PC, to the masses.
Sony, on the other hand, is reportedly working on an iteration of its PS4 with something they’ve code-named Neo. While few facts exist about this machine, it is rumored to be under-powered compared to Microsoft’s new console. Additionally, the PlayStation VR is launching in October, which could be a factor in consumers choosing the PS4 over other consoles.
Consoles have been moving at an incredible pace this generation, but none better than the PS4. According to a report by VGChartz, PS4 sales crossed the 42 million mark in June. It stated that the Xbox One has sold over 21 million units, with the Wii U selling over 13 million. With all three companies releasing new consoles soon, time will tell if PS4 sales continue to dominate, or if all three systems start to peak as consumers anticipate what’s next.
[Photo by Shizuo Kambayash/AP Images]