Ampere Analysis’ Piers Harding-Rolls has shared the company’s predictions on console sales across the key years of the new generation. With PlayStation keeping its lead but Xbox pegging it back when compared to the current generation gap.
The analysis, which is for global sales of all the next generation consoles (so XSX and XSS, PS5 and PS5 DE) shows that Sony takes an early lead by the end of 2020 and that continues to grow steady across the next five year.
“While Microsoft will be more competitive next cycle, especially in the key battleground of continental Europe where the company lost ground during the Xbox One cycle, the PlayStation brand still resonates more strongly than Xbox outside of the US and UK markets where the situation is more balanced. This is unlikely to dramatically shift during the next cycle however strong Microsoft’s positioning is,” said Harding-Rolls.
According to the company’s current data, PlayStation held a considerable lead as of Q2 2020, with the installed base of PS4 (all versions) standing at 111m, Xbox One (all versions) at 51m and Nintendo Switch (all versions) 57m. “Sony has built a formidable global brand in PlayStation over the last 25 years,” he added.
Harding-Rolls said that Sony was revisiting the successful exclusives strategy that had performed so well for it under PS4: “It is centering its strategy on games and exclusives made specifically for the new platform, and allowing those games to fully utilize the latest technology included in the PS5.”
And he notes that Microsoft is not going to contend with Sony on this front: “With Microsoft playing the long game and retreating from the traditional product strategy of releasing exclusives for a new console, Sony has an open goal with the launch of the PS5. It has rightly identified this as a key competitive strength and is expected to push the message of ‘games built specifically for the PS5 platform’ heavily in the run up to launch. In the context of selling next-gen consoles this factor clearly gives Sony a substantial advantage, although Microsoft would argue that its approach is more consumer friendly, focused on the gamer and about keeping its audience engaged.”
He also notes that Sony has made a number of moves to combat Microsoft’s strategy, which includes the cheaper XSS and Game Pass, as an attractive bundle. With Sony striking back with a more affordable Digital Edition of the PS5, which retains the full power of the standard console, and adding the PlayStation Plus Collection to help combat Game Pass.