Xbox Stopped Revealing Console Sales Due To Focus On Growth As Ecosystem

"Sales Don't Reflect Healthy Ecosystem"

Story Highlights
  • Microsoft stopped disclosing sales numbers of Xbox consoles in 2015.
  • Xbox lags behind PlayStation and Nintendo, so people believe this was the reason for this decision.
  • The Xbox CFO states Microsoft is more focused on a gaming platform than console sales.

Over 21 million Xbox Series S|X have been sold, but Microsoft is lagging behind the competition. While Nintendo and PlayStation provide updated sales figures each quarter, the same cannot be said for Microsoft.

It suddenly stopped publicizing console sale numbers in 2015, and at that time, this caused confusion. However, the Xbox CFO recently shed more light on this decision, clarifying that console sales are no longer as important for the company.

Why it matters: In the past, units sold have been considered a big measure of the success of companies like PlayStation and Xbox.

Xbox One

Microsoft CFO Tim Stuart discussed Microsoft’s policy of not disclosing hardware sales at the Wells Fargo 2023 TMT Summit this week, asserting that according to Microsoft, unit sales numbers don’t provide a clear picture of how the Xbox brand is performing.

He had this to say about the subject:

“It was really the first point of us saying it’s about content and services.”

Therefore, the CFO asses Xbox’s success with how many customers are part of the brand, which can extend beyond the consoles.

Following measures like Game Pass and first-party releases on PC, Xbox is more of a brand than a home console. Therefore, this belief is reflected in the company’s decision to forego console sales as a unit of success.

Still, some believe Microsoft made this decision to hide the fact that it is so far behind the competition. However, in the past, Phil Spencer stated that sales numbers cannot be considered a reflection of a healthy ecosystem.

Xbox Game Pass

To further drive home the point of growing Xbox as an ecosystem, the CFO recently claimed that Microsoft wants to bring its games to every screen, including the competition.

Following the merger with Activision Blizzard, Microsoft has positioned itself as a massive publisher with ownership of Call of Duty, Diablo, and other IPs. It aims to use these IPs to double down on efforts.

Microsoft’s decision, while odd, has been in effect for many years. While sales figures have been spotted in internal presentations and documents, Xbox is no longer keen to reveal them publicly.

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