Xbox sales beat PS5 for Microsoft's best start to the year since the Xbox 360

Microsoft has enjoyed its best non-Christmas sales quarter ever, with the Xbox outselling the PS5 in the West for the last three months.

Microsoft has had its best opening three months of the year since the early 2010s, beating sales of the PlayStation 5 between January and March.

The Xbox ended up doing so well it was Microsoft’s best non-Christmas period of sales ever, with gaming revenue in general up 6% from the same period in 2021, content and services up 4%, and hardware revenue up 14%.

Microsoft boss Satya Nadella was so pleased he proclaimed that, ‘We are the market leader this quarter among the next gen consoles in the United States, Canada, the UK, and western Europe’, while adding that Xbox had increased its market share for two quarters in a row now.

Like any company though, Microsoft is massaging the figures here, not least in the fact that beating the Xbox One is no difficult achievement.

More importantly, the use of the phrase ‘next gen’ means this doesn’t include the Nintendo Switch, which handily outsold both the Xbox Series X/S and PlayStation 5 during the period.

There’s also the very obvious fact that the PlayStation 5 is now more supply constrained than the Xbox Series X/S, with Sony having done everything to ensure plenty of stock before Christmas while knowing that they’d have considerably less afterwards.

It’s still an important achievement for Microsoft but until both consoles are equally easy to obtain it’s pointless making any direct comparisons between the two, and that probably won’t happen until at least next year.

Even then, Microsoft is much more engaged with streaming and the PC than Sony is, so judging the two companies’ relative success purely by hardware sales is not entirely fair.

That’s certainly the excuse Microsoft gives for not revealing sales figures for Xbox Series X/S consoles, which are believed to be around a half to two-thirds that of the PlayStation 5 so far this generation.

Some notes:

Total revenue: $3.74 billion (+6% YoY)
Content & Services = 81% of revenue
Hardware = 19% of revenue

– Best non-holiday quarter for Xbox
– Xbox Series X|S supply up from last year
– Content and Services crossed $3bn for the first time in a Q1 period.

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