As the latest round of NPD results in the United States already underlined, Sony has a serious headache when it comes to PS5 stock – or the lack thereof. While, ironically, things have started to improve in the past few days, the dream of transitioning PS4 players at “unprecedented pace” now looks long dead. With the trillion-dollar Microsoft also digging a few billion out of the back of its sofa to buy up publishers like Bethesda and Activision-Blizzard, the road ahead looks rough for PlayStation and its position of dominance.
And after starting the generation strong, the stock issue is now really catching up to the PS5. Speaking as part of a corporate chest beating meeting, Microsoft bigwig Satya Nadella explained that his company’s newest console has “taken share globally for two quarters in a row and [was] the market leader this quarter among next-gen consoles in the US, Canada, UK, and Western Europe”. Translation from Executive Speak™: Xbox Series X|S has outsold the PS5, not the Nintendo Switch, in select countries the past two quarters in a row.
As Microsoft no longer reports hardware sales numbers, it’s unlikely we’ll ever find out how many more consoles it actually sold. However, with Sony dropping tentpole exclusive titles like Horizon Forbidden West and Gran Turismo 7 during the past quarter alone, this isn’t exactly the result it would have been hoping for. The reality is that it’s producing as many consoles as it can and it’s still coming up short. Things, it’s probably fair to say, are not going to plan – largely through no fault of its own.