Figures Show PS3 Has Finally Outsold The 360

Figures from IDC show that the PlayStation 3 has finally outsold the Xbox 360.

The full report on the current state of games consoles is going for $4,500, but has picked out some highlights, which include the news that the PS3 has shifted 77 million units, against the 360’s 76 million.


The numbers are worldwide shipped, not necessarily sold through, but it does indicate that the gap is considerably smaller now than it used to be, with the generation playing out with Wii well in front and the two HD consoles pretty much neck and neck at the end.

“The console ecosystem is in a state of flux since these platforms need to support an ever-growing array of non-gaming features and services at the same time that game distribution and monetization is moving in a digital direction,” said Lewis Ward, research manager of IDC’s Gaming service.

The report suggests that the Wii U will reach shipments of 50 million by the end of 2016.

“2011 and 2012 were tough for many console game disc developers and publishers,” says the report. “With the advent of eighth-generation consoles, starting with the Wii U, historical norms strongly imply that game disc revenue will stop bleeding in 2013 and rise substantively in 2014.”



  1. Massive success by Microsoft to come from nowhere and reduce Sony’s share down from 74% of the market last-gen to half of the HD-only market and obviously less overall including the Wii.

    Think MS ‘only’ lost <$3bn on the Xbox 360 too, compared to Sony's near $5bn losses on the PS3, not too shabby from MS considering the cost of replacing models in the first few years.

    • what I don’t understand is if they are making a loss from the consoles, why are they bothering in the first place. Or is that the cost for the console only?

      • Because Sony take a cut of the price of every single game sold for the PlayStation and that’s where they make money.

      • The divisions as a whole not just the consoles

        Pretty sure some creative accounting goes on, but the real win for consoles is getting a cool brand in the living room.

        Xbox brand will be an important brand for Microsoft & Windows, not to mention all the XBL revenue and the 360 is probably the best set-top ‘connected’ box in the US now – a huge win for them away from the devices supposed purpose of playing games.

        Similarly PlayStation is an incredible brand for Sony and was a trojan horse for a a disc format they helped back. Content deals look a bit of an after thought though in comparison to the 360 especially in the US and it’s not clear how much of a success PS+ in comparison to Live.

        Think it’s pretty clear the level of R&D which broke the bank for the X360 & PS3 is not being repeated for the NeXtBox & PS4 though so the gaming divisions will be on better footing to deliver positive financial results this time around along with presumably profitable long tail of X360 & PS3 sales after the next-gen is on the shelves.

      • A lot of Sony’s was around the CELL development which had been planned to be used in tech beyond consoles. They also sell consoles at a lost and claw the money back through game sales.

      • ahaa, I see I guess that makes sense getting a brand in the house etc, just seems a lot of money to me. I suppose if they can extend their success into the new generation without spending too much on them, then that’s the real win.

      • @tuffcub @jimmy-google

        Rather obviously, I know they make money off the platform licence fee. duh

        The figures I mentioned were for their WHOLE gaming divisions.

      • It’s my limited understanding that consoles are sold on the ‘Razor’ approach, ie the ‘Razor’ itself, here the console is sold at a loss, money made on the ‘Blades’, here games and things like memory cards, joypads etc.

        MS threw a huge amount of money into the 1st Xbox, knowing from day 1 just how much of a loss the hardware would incur (reason Xbox pulled so quickly once 360 launched was dut to cost to produce each unit, MS even going as far as to say, from cost’s perspective, putting a HDD in the Xbox as std, was a ‘mistake’), but they needed to establish the brand and get Xbox Live installed and up and running, laying the groundwork for the 360, something that’s worked out very well in the long run.

        Why do they bother? the ‘fear’ that IF they don’t provide a 1-stop, set top box that will deliver consumers games, video, music etc, then someone else will capture that ‘space in the living room’ and they will have missed an op.

        Kinda reminds me of Sony reacting to massive original Game Boy sales, they scolded their engineers, saying YOU should have come up with something like this.

        Amazing how bumpy a ride PS3 has had though, Activision once threatened to drop support unless sales improved, the hysteria on various forums after PSN hack with people reporting ‘huge numbers’ of PS3 owners trading thier consoles in for 360’s etc.

        Pity Sony cannot seem to make it’s hand helds the sucsess it’s main consoles are.

      • link for your claims Von?

    • PS3 had more expensive parts.

      • PS3 has quality parts and a future-proof design, it’s the ONLY bit of home equipment bought in 2006 that’s still bang upto date 6 years later.

        That’s unheard of.

      • I agree never had one break on me yet.

    • Very true, but one could counter argue that, given the dreadful start the PS3 had, a year headstart, and a cheaper console that Microsoft have really let a comfortable lead slip quite drastically.

    • Do you think Xbox replacement units from RROD were included in the shipped numbers? Because if so that’s another large chunk of the number.

      • The warranty ones weren’t. But the millions of out of warranty ones are included, as are all the inital fat ones that got dumped for slim models. (PS3 never had the huge gulf in performance between slim and fat).

  2. @tuffcub @jimmy-google

    Rather obviously, I know they make money off the platform licence fee. duh

    The figures I mentioned were for their WHOLE gaming divisions.

    • I’m guessing the articles relating to the PS3 turning a profit (c.2010) after new hardware is just referring to the actual models being sold at a profit then? When I first read these I thought they meant that they were in profit, properly… I’m daft… :P

  3. nice one Sony PS3s year.

    • Yep, glad to see the PS3 has done so well as there was a lot of doom and gloom about it not long after launch.

    • Infact every year since 2007 has been Sony’s year, outselling the Xbox360 EVERY SINGLE YEAR, according to official end of year financials.

      Not that you would get that impression, the way the rabid pro-American gaming media have been selectively reporting things..

      Official Numbers:

      PS3 Xbox360
      2011: 13.9m 13.6m
      2010: 14.3m 11.9m
      2009: 13.0m 11.7m
      2008: 10.1m 10.0m
      2007: 9.1m 7.7m

      • Hang on, are you suggesting the American gaming media focus on gaming in America where the 360 has soundly beaten the PS3?! That’s shameful bias. :-)

      • I’m saying English speaking countries are swayed by the power of American gaming media.

        That’s why Xbox is strong in English speaking countries, as Microsoft bought their way to the front this gen (or back as it now transpires), buy getting just a few gaming sites on their site with lavish “gifts” and “advertising” bribes..

        How else could such an unreliable pile of crap, with virtually no worthwhile 1st party exclusives, costly accessories, and a insane double-dip subscription model succeed?

        Get the media on your side, and you can brainwash an entire generation of gullible American teenagers who are media sponges. Throw in a bit of “it’s cool to back the underdog”, and lots of FUD against the competition, and you have won over America. They get Britain and Australia for free because of the lack of regional gaming sites, they just flock to the US ones…

      • @sillyseason i think you should check your facts about australia before continuing with your rant. the ps3 has been outselling the xbox for the last couple of years. in 2011 (and from memory in 2012) it even outsold the wii. not everyone is so easily lead by gaming media. year old source for some info. (am i allowed to link to outside sources? even if they are crappy newspapers?)

  4. The 360 is massive in the US which counteracts it’s woeful performance in Japan and average performance in Europe. What MS have shown is that you can focus on catering on one market and be very successful. Replicating is hard especially with competition expanding.

    Sony were always going to find it difficult to live up to the exceptional sales of the PS1 and PS2 but they may not be far off the PS1 sales with the PS3. Considering it’s very slow start is impressive in itself. The PS1 had about 75m sales when the “psone” was released. If the new slim has the same impact then it may hit the 102 million sales of the ps1.

    The Wii was at just under 100 million at the end of September. The 360 and PS3 aren’t that far behind. Another year on the market with out a new console may mean all three end up very close on sales.

    • Sony have shown to SMART gamers, that launch price is irreverent.

      In the timeframe that I bought a single £425 PS3, all my Xbox owning friends have spend double that and bought at least 2 replacement Xbox360 consoles, coutless pointless addons and controller batteries or proprietary memory cards and HDD’s and hundreds of points on Xbox Live Gold subscriptions.

      They don’t even have Blu-Ray yet, that’s next-gen apparently.

      No wonder everyone laughs at them.

  5. Good on them. Sure, it’s a huge shift in market ownership from the last generation but nice to see Sony eventually catching up with the head-start that Microsoft had.

  6. I’m not surprised it finally managed to outsell the 360 as Sony have been shoving out a lot of support for it during the past few years whilst MS seems to be giving less support to the 360 gaming wise. MS have cocked up as they have thrown away the early release advantage that the 360 had thus ensuring the PS3 climbing it’s way to their spot. I suspect the Kinect may have been the cause of the loss of the advantage and recently, the lack of advertising for the 360.(judging from what i’ve seen)

    I wonder if the PS3 will outsell the Wii or just continue to outsell the 360? If MS don’t up their game, the 360 will get battered by the PS3 and the Wii U although it is debateable whether the Wii U can be included. I suspect the losses they made with the PS3 have finally been covered for due to this and due to their cut of the profits of the games that are released on PS3. This year will be interesting to see what will happen between the 360 and the PS3.

  7. It’s very strange one this. Mean basically Nintendo winning this console war with Sony second and Microsoft at the bottom, although you get the general consensus from most gaming sites that PS3 failed while Xbox360 was the winner.
    I can see PS3 possibly catching up wii eventually as a decent cheap blu-ray player and media hub. No real point buying a 360 nowadays and mine is gathering dust in the bedroom. Shame it can’t play blu-rays really.

  8. Well done SONY;) Bad luck hating gaming sites & all who comment on them LoL:D

    • There’s hating gaming sites and people comment on them? :)

  9. Be interesting to see which of the 2 formats gets supported longer, once the next generation hits.The PS2 only recently stopping production, PS1 being seen as entry level console when PS2 launched, yet Xbox dropped like a stone come 360 (posted reasons for earlier in thread).

    Have a feeling this time MS will keep 360 better supported, just as entry level device, dropping prices, putting together more Kinect bundles etc, aiming as cheaper Wii U etc.

    • I’m hoping it’ll drop like a stone because I want one to play Trials HD and Forza but I’m not paying silly money for the pleasure.

    • I hope so for 360 owners, I only had an Xbox last gen and was massively disappointed when support stopped overnight, whereas PS2 owners kept getting new games.

    • supported means games which there not doing.

  10. I was originally a die-hard 360 fan, having always viewed Sony with some resentment as the company that killed my beloved Sega consoles. This was despite owning a PS2, and various PSP’s amongst my console collection.

    But the dwindling exclusives, repeated RROD’s, rise of Kinect, and the slow change of the dashboard to an advert laden mobile phone OS finally took their toll and I got a PS3 this year. I have absolutely loved my time with the system (despite whatever annoyances Sony seems intent on creating in any given week), and there are certainly far more reasons to own one now over a 360.

    • Those annoyances arn’t real. They are a smokescreen created by Microsot’s media partners…

      They make everyone in Europe think US gamers get a better deal.. Go to the US Playstation forums, and there are shills there that point out that European gamers get a better deal than they do…

      PSN hack was MASSIVELY blown out of all proportion (the reality is, nobody got anything worthwhile, no passwords were taken, and nobody every lost any money), but given the media circus that resulted from it, you would have been forgiven into thinking otherwise. Yet the other side of the story is the buried Xbox account hacking, when vast swathes of REAL customers, losing REAL money, and yet the media bury that on, for fear of upsetting Microsoft…

      Microsoft have got where they are this gen by a FUD campaign against Sony and the PS3, and it’s already repeating..

      Take the PS4 stories won’t play used disks nonsense last week. The EXACT same story was leaked in the run up to the PS3 launch, it’s nothing more than a FUD mission to damage the PS4’s reputation before it’s even out the gate.

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