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Microsoft thought the Xbox Series X was better than the PS5 after its reveal
Microsoft said it was a "good day for Xbox" after Sony revealed the PS5
Microsoft wasn’t worried about Sony’s PS5 when it was revealed in early 2020 and believed the Xbox Series X was the superior product.
That’s according to a leaked email from Microsoft’s gaming CEO Phil Spencer, which is part of a massive Xbox leak, which revealed Spencer was bullish about the Xbox Series X console’s specs, design, and software lineup when compared to Sony’s offering.
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Spencer emailed Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and chief financial official Amy Hood shortly after Sony revealed the PlayStation 5, and said: “After almost 12 hours of soaking in their unveil, taking apart their specs and looking at the community responses I just wanted to say that I’m proud of our team.”
Spencer went on to say: “We have a better product than Sony does, not just on hardware but equally important on the software platform and services on top of the hardware. We have the ingredients of a winning plan.”
➡️ The Shortcut Skinny: Xbox vs PS5
🆚 Microsoft was confident that the Xbox Series X was better than the PS5
🙌 Xbox boss Phil Spencer said he believed they had “all the ingredients of a winning plan”
📈 PS5 surpassed over 40 million units, while Xbox Series X|S sales are estimated to be around 21 million
🤔 Microsoft is more competitive this generation compared to when it launched the Xbox One
Despite Spencer’s confidence in the Xbox Series X, the PS5 has already amassed an unassailable lead in terms of sales. Sony’s console has surpassed 40 million units sold, while Microsoft has sold around 21 million units.
The sales disparity doesn’t mean that Spencer was wrong about the Xbox Series X. I personally think it’s a fantastic console, though the software has been lacking. It launched at the same competitive price point, despite being more powerful on paper and also coming with more storage But there are several reasons why the PS5 has been so successful.
Sony amassed a huge amount of goodwill during the PS4 generation, leading many consumers to stick with what they know and upgrade to the PS5. PlayStation has also historically been dominant in European and Asian markets, while Microsoft has performed best in the US.
You could also argue Sony has also released more compelling software this generation so far, with many of the best PS5 games garnering praise from critics and gamers alike. However, when it comes to PS5 vs Xbox Series X, both consoles have their strengths and weaknesses, and it isn’t the same as the PS4 vs Xbox One, where Sony’s console was dominant in almost every aspect – something which Spencer notes in the leaked email.
“We’ve all lived with 7 years of starting off a generation with a price and performance (and message) disadvantage to PS4 with Xbox One,” Spencer said.
Spencer also clarified that despite feeling positive, it didn’t mean that Xbox Series X would be crowned the overall winner of this generation.
“We haven’t won anything,” Spencer concluded. “And I know we have hard discussions about pricing, P&L [profit and loss], investments, etc. This mail isn’t trying to scoop any of that, those discussions really matter. But we can take confidence in our product truth here and I do believe any conversation needs to start believing in that. This was a good day for Xbox.”
Microsoft will be hoping it can continue to elevate the strength of its Xbox Game Pass subscription model and release new hardware that harnesses the power of the cloud to offer new experiences in the future.