The Xbox Series X/S are the fastest-selling Xbox consoles ever. That’s according to Xbox head Phil Spencer in a recent interview with the New York Times. It’s no secret that supply for all next-generation consoles has been tight since the consoles launched last year, however, in the interview, Phil Spencer attributed the supply constraints to the overwhelming demand.
Spencer said, “At this point, we’ve sold more of this generation of Xboxes, which is Xbox Series X and S, than we had any previous version of Xboxes. So it’s our job to get the supply there to meet that demand”
Launching in the middle of a pandemic, many gamers assumed the lack of consoles was due to supply constraints. While that may be partly true, it seems as though it’s the demand for next-gen systems that is actually making them hard to find. The pandemic has caused a huge increase in gaming participation since it’s one of the most popular hobbies that can be done at home.
Spencer said in the same interview that even last-gen consoles were experiencing a huge spike in demand. “The swell in usage in gaming was a surprise to us. Back in — what would it have been — March, April of 2020 — we sold out of consoles, which we never do.”
It’s not just console gaming that has become more popular during the pandemic. Steam has been breaking record after record for the most concurrent users online at the same time. The most recent record is a staggering 10 million users over the pre-pandemic record. The latest concurrent player record sits at over 28 million users while the pre-pandemic record was 18.8 million players.
Microsoft and Sony went to great lengths to get consoles in stock for the holiday period that just passed. However, it’s doubtful that they were able to satisfy demand.