A quick update on the state of PlayStation 4 sales, since everyone’s watching this closely, and the numbers keep rising at record rates: After I broke down a questionable demographic report on Black Friday console sales in the U.S. yesterday morning, Sony released updated sales figures for the PS4 worldwide. The new figure: 2.1 million units sold.
You’ll recall Sony sold one million PS4s during the system’s initial 24 hours (in the U.S. and Canada alone), after which the signal went dark for a bit — until last week, when the system launched in Europe: In the U.K. alone, the PS4 sold 250,000 units (according to MCV), which apparently broke all prior console launch sales records in that country’s history.
Add everything up, and Sony’s new 2.1 million units sales figure includes 700,000 units sold-through (“through” meaning into customer hands, as opposed to shipped to stores — a crucial distinction) in Europe and Australasia, where the PS4 launched on November 29. Sony adds that the system is now available in 32 countries worldwide.
Contrast these rosy figures with the beleaguered PlayStation 3 launch seven years ago, when Sony said it would have less than half a million units available at launch and reportedly failed to meet even that modest goal by a significant margin. Sony predicted PS3 sales around the six million units mark by the end of its fiscal year in March 2007, but wound up selling only slightly more than half that figure.
The PS4, by contrast, is a third of the way to that last-gen goal — a goal issued at a time when the question “whither consoles?” (in view of the mobile boom that followed) wasn’t even on pundits’ lips — just a few weeks into its lifecycle. We’ve yet to hear Microsoft’s side of the story, but assuming sales of the Xbox One are in the same ballpark, it has me shifting from skeptic to cautious optimist about the appetite for the whole dedicated-high-end-gaming-box-in-my-living-room paradigm.
All eyes to you, developers — it’s your show now.
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