Sony is expected to notch an installed base of 69.1 million PlayStation 5 consoles by 2025, beating 40.4 million Xbox Series X/S devices forecast by Strategy Analytics.
It comes as both companies pursue different console strategies, with Sony focused on large-screen gaming and Microsoft on multi-screen gameplay.
Microsoft Xbox boss, Phil Spencer, has pledged to ensure gameplay occurs on iPhones in the future, despite restrictions within the Apple App Store.
Xbox has moved towards a subscription-approach, whilst Sony has retained its pay-once focus. It comes as the industry moves towards cloud gaming and multiscreen strategies, with commentators asserting the next fifty years will prove the success of either vendor’s strategy.
Strategy Analytics expects global PlayStation 5 shipments to notch 4.6 million units by the end of the year, versus 3.9 million Xbox Series X/S devices.
Xbox X/S shipments are forecast to peak in 2024 at around 10 million, with PS5s peaking around 2023-24 with 16.5 million units.
“As long as [Microsoft’s] titles appeal to users of smartphones and PCs as well as consoles, it stands a good chance of making a long-term success of its subscription business model,” states Michael Goodman, Strategy Analytics Director – TV & Media Strategies
“But it faces a number of challenges, not least in persuading games publishers of their incremental revenue opportunity.”
“Sony has won the last several head-to-heads with Xbox and sees no reason to move away from its long-established focus on delivering the ultimate big screen experience,” add David Watkins Strategy Analytics Director – Connected Home Devices.
“But it should also carefully monitor changes in gaming behavior across the entire market to ensure that growth opportunities are not being missed.”