Retailers Reportedly Stopped Stocking Physical Xbox Games Amid Poor Sales

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Retailers Point To 'Really Low' Physical Xbox Sales!

Story Highlights
  • Reports state retailers are refusing to stock physical Xbox games in Europe.
  • They state that most of Xbox’s games are sold as digital copies.
  • The margins on consoles are quite low for retailers, so they are not too interested in the Xbox platform.

Of the three biggest console manufacturers, Xbox is the most digital-centric platform. Microsoft’s presence in the physical media market has dwindled over the years thanks to a focus on Game Pass, PC gaming, and a cheaper all-digital console.

Recent rumors have pointed to Microsoft’s layoff impacting the physical retail department. Adding to this information, Christopher Dring from Gamesindustry claims that several European retailers are not restocking physical Xbox media.

Why it matters: The divide between digital and physical media is growing each year in the gaming industry, with digital media quickly becoming the preferred form of distribution.


As Christopher Dring states, Xbox’s physical sales are too low for retailers to take much interest in. This has discouraged most from putting physical copies on store shelves.

Retailers have acknowledged that Xbox is more of a digital platform today. According to a senior European publishing boss, selling Xbox consoles is not too beneficial to them because of the slim margins.

Once consumers buy consoles like the Xbox Series S|X, they mostly purchase Game Pass subscriptions or digital games. Christopher Dring said:

“Across Europe, several retailers have started not listing Xbox anymore.”

Meanwhile, PlayStation still has a significant physical market share. Similarly, a large chunk of games sold for the Nintendo Switch are physical copies.

Xbox Series S Carbon Black Now Available

This appears to be the natural progression for Xbox as a platform. Since Microsoft’s goal is to offer an ecosystem, it has a large market on Windows. This platform is inherently all-digital, pushing Microsoft even further away from physical media.

While rumors suggest Microsoft’s next console will be an all-digital Xbox Series X, the gaming giant won’t abandon the physical market in the near future.

However, there is no telling what may happen during the next generation. A push for cloud gaming, bigger ambitions for Game Pass, and market preference might mean that Xbox’s future lies much further away from physical games.

Featured Image Credit: Windows Central

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