Xbox Series X/S systems continue to sell faster than any previous generation of Microsoft consoles, the company has claimed.
Having launched in November 2020, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said in July 2021 that Xbox Series X/S were the company’s fastest selling consoles ever.
And in a New York Times interview published on Monday, Microsoft’s gaming boss Phil Spencer said that was still the case.
He claimed persistent Xbox shortages were not actually a result of less consoles being produced than was the case in previous generations. Instead, scarcity has been caused by a surge in demand since the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Back in, what would it have been—March, April of 2020—we sold out of consoles, which we never do, in April and May. Because you had this sudden swell of usage,” he said.
“Our networks were tapped as people were coming on. And the team worked hard to fulfill that demand. And in some ways, we’re still trying to do this.
“When you think about trying to go get an Xbox or a new PlayStation right now in the market, they’re really hard to find,” Spencer continued. “And it’s not because supply is smaller than it’s ever been. Supply is actually as big as it’s ever been. It’s that demand is exceeding the supply for all of us.
“At this point, we’ve sold more of this generation of Xboxes, which is Xbox Series X and S, than we had any previous version of Xboxes. So it’s our job to get the supply there to meet that demand.”
Based on Spencer’s comments, Niko Partners estimates Xbox Series X/S have now shipped over 12 million shipped units, according to senior analyst Daniel Ahmad.
Sony claimed last summer that PS5 had become its fastest selling console ever after topping 10 million sales globally just under a month faster than the PS4 managed. However, the console later fell behind the sales pace of its predecessor.
In October, Sony said PS5 supply issues were negatively impacting hardware sales but that it remained hopeful of hitting its annual console shipment target of 14.8 million units, a feat that would see it best PS4’s performance during the same stage of that console’s lifecycle.
Elsewhere in the wide-ranging New York Times interview, Spencer said Xbox has changed how it does “certain things” with Activision Blizzard following allegations of abuse at the Call of Duty publisher, but that he doesn’t think it’s his job “to punish other companies” for their transgressions.