In a nutshell: During a recent presentation in Brazil, Microsoft announced that it has sold over 21 million Xbox Series consoles to date. Although Redmond did not provide a breakdown of sales by individual model, the tech giant did highlight that 48 percent of Xbox Series S players are new to the Xbox platform.

The Xbox Series S data seemingly highlights the effectiveness of offering a lower-end option in addition to the flagship Xbox Series X. Newcomers can enter the Xbox ecosystem for just $299, which is $100 less than the starting price of Sony's cheapest PlayStation 5. If sold on the experience, it could encourage some owners to upgrade to the higher-end Xbox Series X or consider Microsoft's top-tier console when the next generation arrives.

Microsoft added that combined Xbox Series and Xbox One sales have surpassed 79 million units. By doing some simple calculations, this indicates that Microsoft sold approximately 58 million Xbox One consoles during its lifetime. Microsoft launched its Xbox One near the end of 2013 and halted production at the end of 2020.

For comparison, as of March 31, 2022, Sony has shipped 117.2 million PlayStation 4 consoles.

This admission is noteworthy because Microsoft stopped reporting console sales some time ago after losing the "console wars." Although they did not directly acknowledge it until recently, this lack of reporting meant people had to reply on research data and other sources of information to make educated guesses about Xbox sales.

As of March 31, 2023, Sony had sold around 38.4 million PlayStation 5 consoles. The company's next earnings report is due on August 4, and it will be interesting to see how many additional consoles the company has sold over the last three months.

Microsoft's rare admission during the presentation in Brazil could be seen as another attempt to portray itself as a smaller player in the console market. By doing so, Microsoft may have a better chance of convincing regulators that its $69 billion acquisition of Activision Blizzard would not result in anti-competitive practices.

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