Lifetime Xbox One Sales Reportedly Top 18 Million While PS4 Nearly Doubles That Figure

For anyone keeping score of the modern generation console wars, it appears that Sony winning the battle of sales against rival Microsoft, as has been the case since the beginning. What's interesting is not just that Sony's sold more PlayStation 4 consoles than Microsoft has of its Xbox One, but that the disparity might be as high as 100 percent.

It takes a bit of jumping around the web to arrive at that conclusion. The assumption also requires a reliance on unofficial information, which is to say you should take all this with a few grains of salt (at least a pinch). And rounding our disclaimer about the information obtained, some explaining is involved to put it in context.

PlayStation and Xbox Booth

Let's start with the Xbox One. In an appearance on TWiT, it was revealed by Mary Jo Foley, a freelance contributing writer for ZDNet, that Microsoft's tally of Xbox One sales might be around 18 million units (hit the source link below and skip to the 8m50s mark).

Foley was actually commenting on Microsoft's recent claim of there being over 200 million active Windows 10 users, a figure that includes not only PCs like desktops and laptops, but devices like the Raspberry PI and, yes, the Xbox One (following the New Xbox One Experience, or NXOE, update). Foley cited a source as saying that about 18 million of those belong to the Xbox One.

Xbox One Controller

To extrapolate the data even further, Microsoft's accounting of an active device is one that's been active in the last 28 days. It's a short time period, though it also means that some Xbox One sales over the holiday period might not be included in the 18 million figure. Still, it should be close.

Meanwhile, Sony announced it sold 5.7 million PlayStation 4 consoles over the holidays, bringing the total number since launch to 35.9 million units as of January 3, 2016. That's nearly double the assumed Xbox One sales tally.

PlayStation 4 Controller

"We are absolutely delighted that so many customers have selected PS4 as the best place to play throughout this holiday season and that the PS4 community is growing more than ever," said Andrew House, President and Global CEO of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. "We remain steadfast in our commitment to deliver innovative entertainment experiences, and look forward to bringing an unprecedented games portfolio from third party developers and publishers and SCE Worldwide Studios, including UNCHARTED 4: A Thief’s End, New Hot Shots Golf (working title) and The Last Guardian, this coming year."

It's a big lead, though not necessarily cause for concern. Microsoft doesn't need its Xbox One to outsell Sony's PS4 to be successful, and with a strong lineup of games slated for 2016 -- Halo Wars 2 and Gears of Wars 4, to name just a couple -- things are looking good for Microsoft. Just not as good as they do for Sony.