In an announcement that most of us saw coming a mile off, the £30 price cut on Xbox 360 Elites has boosted figures by 43% in comparison to the previous week’s figures, according to sales tracking firm ChartTrack. This is hardly surprising, and certainly makes for a good headline on the inevitable Microsoft press release, particularly as Sony’s sales were down 20% for the same week. Of course the reasoning behind that is blindingly obvious. The PS3 Slim was released this week, and was being promoted by retailers last week. It seems doubtful under those conditions that anyone would buy the older console, although under those conditions a fall of only 20% seems pretty weird. I would have expected the sales to completely tank in the week preceding a major relaunch of the console.
ChartTrack are of course hopeful for Sony’s sales figures this week predicting some “serious sales numbers”, although they also noted that we shouldn’t expect too much from sales figures this month. Whilst the 360 price cut and the new PS3 hardware are going to help hardware sales this month, the week on week pre-Christmas madness doesn’t begin until October at the earliest. It may well be that consumers have held off from making purchases until a little closer to Christmas, although this unfortunately means it’s far more difficult to gauge the impact that either of these moves has had on the average consumer. Separating ‘Slim’ or ‘price cut’ sales from the general pre-Christmas sales would be next to impossible, so all we can say for certain right now is that the 360 is continuing to go on strong and the PS3 is looking in a significantly stronger position than it was a month ago.