It's no surprise that the PlayStation 4 is selling well around the world and it's no surprise that it's the current frontrunner in sales and as a trending consumer topic within the market, but we don't always have an idea of how well the PS4 is performing outside of certain key regions. Well, now we have an idea of how well the PS4 is performing in certain parts of Europe, and with Media Control GfK we now know how well it's selling in Germany.
Crave Online picked up a story from German site Boerse Online, where they rolled out the Media Control numbers for June 2014 and it doesn't look good for Microsoft or the Xbox One.
Check out the numbers below.
PlayStation 4: 540,000
Xbox One: 170,000
PlayStation 3: 4,200,000
Xbox 360: 2,100,000
I didn't believe the 170,000 figure myself as it seemed like it could have been a typo or something. After clicking through to Boerse Online's website and reading it for myself, it became apparent that the Xbox One is practically dying in Germany.
Now it's easy to believe that the reason for this is likely price “If only the Xbox One were cheaper in Germany” some might say. Well, price isn't a factor at all.
As noted in the article by Crave Online...
“In Germany the PS4 is currently priced at 394,90 euros while the Xbox One without a Kinect is 373,17 euros, giving Microsoft a price advantage in the country. “
That's right, the Xbox One with the Kinect bundle is actually cheaper than the PlayStation 4 and it still can't outsell it. In fact, Crave notes that there are no Xbox One hardware or software accessories on Amazon's best-sellers list in Germany.
While many might presume that this is just a case of extreme fanboyism, it's not. In fact, the reason for the poor sales stems all the way back to Don Mattrick's original policies for the Xbox One (yes, the old group's ways are still haunting the Spencer era), as Boerse notes that the consumer trends for the Xbox One are tied to fears that sparked last year when Germany's Federal Data Protection Commissioner, Peter Schaar, called Kinect 2.0 a “twisted nightmare” after finding out it would – at the time of the interview took place – be always-on and would be able to see in the dark with its infrared sensor.
Boerse writes that...
“...observers attribute the so far disappointing sales of the Xbox One also due to domestic problems. So Microsoft had originally planned his movement control around the clock in the standby mode. This had triggered fears of a possible monitoring for potential customers. In addition, Microsoft had originally planned a daily authentication of users.”
While these policies have now been scrapped in the current model of the Xbox One, it's still something that – at the grassroots level of the gaming community – many consumers feel could be reinstated at a later date by Microsoft, or could make a return once the install base reaches a certain threshold.
Phil Spencer has been working tirelessly in an attempt to turn around the Xbox One's market perception, including releasing a Kinect-less SKU, but it's going to be an extremely long and hard road to get the Xbox brand out of the gutter.