Xbox One reportedly sold only half as many units as PS4 in its lifetime

Microsoft has revealed a shocking statistic as it pleads a case with Brazil's CADE.
xbox one console ps4

Microsoft is continuing to argue its case for acquiring Activision Blizzard to Brazil’s Administrative Council for Economic Defense, with its latest report revealing a wild stat the company probably wouldn’t be too proud of. According to new court documents spotted by GameLuster and shared by Eurogamer, the Xbox One console was greatly overshadowed by the success of the PlayStation 4, with the console only selling half as many units as its rival.

The documents specify that the PS4 sold ‘twice as many’ consoles as the Xbox One, a statistic that was likely cited to rebut Sony’s claim that Microsoft’s acquisition of Activision Blizzard would create an unfair monopoly.

‘Sony has surpassed Microsoft in terms of console sales and installed [sic] base, having sold more than twice as many Xbox [One units] in the last generation,’ the document reportedly states, via Google Translate.

Sales statistics from Sony, via Daniel Ahmad, state that lifetime PS4 sales amount to around 117.2 million as of March 2022. Should we assume these are the statistics cited by Microsoft, this likely means the Xbox One sold only around 50-60 million units in its lifetime.

Read: Microsoft accuses Sony of blocking games from Xbox Game Pass

These stats were never cited during the height of the console wars, and have since gone unremarked on – but it appears, according to Microsoft’s filing, that there was never really a war to begin with. While this stat does make a clear case for Microsoft – it’s hardly creating a monopoly when Sony is seemingly dominating the world of video games – it also makes the Xbox One look like a comparative failure.

That goes doubly so, given both consoles existed in a time when console exclusives were still a selling point. The Xbox One era played host to a number of exclusives, like the Halo: Master Chief Collection, Gears 5, and Sea of Thieves. It appears these simply didn’t have the pulling power of Sony’s PlayStation 4 offerings (which featured games like Marvel’s Spider-Man, God of War and The Last of Us) – although part of this is likely to blame on many Xbox exclusives also being available on PC.

With a shared Xbox-PC ecosystem, there’s no real urge to fork out for the Xbox as a standalone console, outside of price barriers or console preference. Microsoft alluded to this in its filing, stating its video games are becoming less ‘device-centric’ overall, with less of a focus on console sales.

As Microsoft continues to plead its case, it’s likely we’ll hear more intriguing tidbits and statistics about the history and future of the company. Stay tuned for a final verdict.

Leah J. Williams is a gaming and entertainment journalist who's spent years writing about the games industry, her love for The Sims 2 on Nintendo DS and every piece of weird history she knows. You can find her tweeting @legenette most days.