Microsoft’s Chris Satchell claims that “over half” of the people who have bought Xbox 360 since its November 2005 launch did not buy an Xbox 1.
“We’ve sold 10.4 million, but the stat you may not have heard is that over half of those sales are from people that didn’t own an Xbox 1,” Satchell – general manager of Microsoft’s game developer group – told our sister site GamesIndustry.biz in an interview published today.
“So there’re lots of new people coming in, which kind of surprises you. What we’re actually finding is that our customer set is broadening, which we think is important.”
That’s a view well known to be shared by Nintendo, which has made significant strides with its DS and – it believes – Wii business by seeking to broaden its target demographic rather than simply selling more games and systems to existing fans.
However Satchell’s comments are likely to be questioned in some quarters because Microsoft has already publicly admitted that it hasn’t really sold 10.4 million consoles to consumers.
Speaking to gi.biz at CES, Peter Moore said that in the context of its own figures, “‘Sold’ means that we’re a wholesaler of hardware and we sell it to a retailer, and that’s the important criteria.”
Meanwhile, recent NPD Group figures put Xbox 360’s US installed base at 4.5 million, with Wii at 1.1 million and PlayStation 3 finding its feet with around 690,000 US owners by the end of 2006.
Whatever the real 360 number though, the fact that Microsoft is claiming “over half” as new consumers is likely to cause concern amongst its console rivals and surprise commentators – some of whom have been vocal in their belief that Xbox 360’s early success is down to enthusiasm from the existing 24-million-strong pool of Xbox 1 owners, and not necessarily thanks to growth in Microsoft’s console business.
Microsoft, Xbox, xBox 360, CES