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In a nutshell: It's no secret that the PS5 has hammered the Xbox Series family when it comes to sales, but how are the two variants of Microsoft's console performing against each other? Somewhat surprisingly, the lesser-powered Xbox Series S is outselling the XBSX in several key markets.
Ampere Analytics looked at sales data from the 11 months since the latest Xbox consoles went on sale and found that the Xbox Series S is outperforming the Xbox Series X, with the caveat that this is only in "several key markets."
A total of 6.7 million Xbox Series X/S consoles had been sold by the end of September, though Ampere never gave a breakdown of how many sales belonged to each variant. According to GamesIndustry.biz, the consoles have a 50/50 split in terms of install base across major territories.
Unlike the digital version of the PS5, which is the same console minus a disc drive, the Xbox Series S is a cut-down version of the Series X, in both specs and size, targeting 1440p gaming rather than native 4K.
The Xbox Series S has been selling so well for two reasons: An MSRP $200 lower than the XBSX; and it hasn't been suffering the same supply issues as its more powerful sibling.
In September last year, Mortal Kombat co-creator Ed Boon predicted that the Series S would become the best-selling next-gen Xbox. The same forecast was also made by head of Xbox Phil Spencer. It's starting to look as if they could be proved right.
The success of the Xbox Series S has seen digital titles make up a considerable percentage of Xbox game sales, more so than the PS5. Over 90% of sales of Call of Duty: Vanguard on Xbox came as a digital download, according to GSD.
The PlayStation 5 had outsold the Xbox Series X/S by almost double during the same September-end period, shifting 12.8 million units. The Nintendo Switch, which has been available for three years, had sold 89.7 million units. However, improved availability has seen the PS5 outselling the Switch in Europe recently by "some distance," according to Ampere, and Sony's console was the best-selling hardware platform in September 2021 in terms of both units and dollars generated, the first time a console other than the Switch led the market.