Phil Spencer, the boss of Xbox, answered questions from the press for the launch of the new consoles. He reaffirms that the brand will no longer give the sales figures of the machines.
With the Xbox Series S and Xbox Series X, Microsoft can finally put the Xbox One generation behind it. As we can read in the interview with Ina Gelbert, director of Xbox France, for Frandroid, the company had to learn a lot from the failure of the launch of the Xbox One to put its gaming branch and its strategy back in order. It was during this generation that the company decided to no longer communicate the sales figures of its consoles. It must be said that without being catastrophic, it is estimated that Microsoft has sold more than 50 million Xbox One, the brand is undoubtedly the third in the market behind the Nintendo Switch, and far behind its rival the PlayStation 4.
One could wonder if the departure of a new generation, which should probably know a better success in particular thanks to the price of the Xbox Series S and the Xbox All Access offer. In an interview with the Guardian, Phil Spencer, boss of Xbox, confirms that will not be the case.
“Google Stadia will not report Chromecast sales”
In this interview, Phil Spencer begins by explaining that communicating on sales figures, whether internally for his teams or publicly, would place these figures as the goal of his division. However, if we set out to maximize console sales, he points out that the firm would have less interest in things like backward compatibility or the release of games on PCs under Windows 10.
He promises not to release sales figures, even though the Xbox Series S and X were selling much better than the PlayStation 5. Here he points to the launch of Google Stadia and Amazon Luna cloud gaming services which are not. based on the sale of a physical object: ” I’m not going to compete with their numbers with how many Xbox Series Xs I’ve sold. [Google] will never communicate the number of Chromecast Ultra they have sold “. Here, Phil Spencer once again moves the video game industry beyond gaming consoles, and points to what he had already said before: for him, Google and Amazon are his real competitors, and not Sony or Nintendo.
The change of generation will therefore do nothing, it is clear that in the future Microsoft will continue to communicate on the number of “monthly active Xbox players” and on the number of Xbox Game Pass subscribers.
Demand for Xbox Series is greater than supply
Like Sony, Microsoft is unable to produce enough consoles, especially the Xbox Series X, to keep up with demand. On Twitter, Phil Spencer said it was the biggest Xbox launch in history with a 24 hour sales record. Recall that the Xbox Series S and X were launched in more countries than the Xbox One in 2013.
Thank you for supporting the largest launch in Xbox history. In 24 hrs more new consoles sold, in more countries, than ever before. We’re working with retail to resupply as quickly as possible. You continue to show us the connective power of play is more important than ever.
— Phil Spencer (@XboxP3) November 12, 2020
As promised, unfortunately it does not give precise sales figures. In 2013, the launch of the Xbox One was also “the biggest launch in the history of Xbox” passing the mark of one million units sold. We can therefore estimate that there have been more than a million Xbox Series consoles sold.
Always looking for studios to buy
Microsoft boss Satya Nadella had already promised after the announcement of the buyout of Bethesda, Microsoft wants to continue buying video game studios.
In an interview with Bloomberg media, Phil Spencer reaffirms this promise.
Games are what gamers play. We are building these platforms and services to deliver the best games to gamers around the world, which is why we need a lot of internal development teams. Bethesda almost doubles the size of our first party studios – the internal studios that develop games for Xbox – and we are always looking for other teams. It is important that we have a continuous supply of great games for our subscription and our gaming platforms.
Recently, the Bloomberg site claimed that many Japanese studios had been approached by Microsoft for an acquisition. On this subject, Phil Spencer denied this information to the Gamespot site, indicating that the redemptions were until now on a long-term relationship between Xbox and the acquired studio (Bethesda had made several exclusives for Xbox for example), and that Microsoft was therefore not operating by contacting many studios as reported by Bloomberg.
However, he does not deny his interest in Japan, and also specifies that he is eager to work with Tango Gameworks, which should become the first internal Xbox studio in Japan, once the takeover of parent company Zenimax / Bethesda is completed.