When it comes to Xbox results, Microsoft is usually very stingy with details. The EU Digital Services Act forces the company to let go of its tongue and give numbers. And in Europe they are low.
If Nintendo and Sony share a lot of numbers about the popularity of the Switch and PlayStation consoles, with number of players, game sales and subscriptions, Microsoft is much less vocal about the Xbox.
As of 2014, Microsoft no longer communicates the sales figures of its Xbox consoles and does not give more or less details about the health of its video game business. Even about the number of Xbox Game Pass subscriptions, the brand very rarely communicates.
Fortunately, in Europe there is the Digital Services Act (DSA) that now obliges the brand to communicate publicly.
Only 6 million Xbox players in the EU?
As we’ve already mentioned, the Digital Services Act (DSA) is a new regulation in the European Union that aims to encourage platform accountability and better moderation of content. Above the threshold of 45 million users per month in the EU, legalization imposes further restrictions.
Brands must therefore communicate publicly about the number of users they reach in the member states of the European Union. Microsoft has published on his website an indicative table in that sense.
We can read that on the video games side, Microsoft estimates that it has an average of 4 to 6 million users of its online store selling games, depending on whether it is accessed from an Xbox console or the website. Keep in mind that the Xbox is a platform on which the purchase of online games is very much loved by players. Xbox Game Pass is also not available in all EU countries.
Microsoft doesn’t give details on how it counts users, but it’s safe to assume that a visit to the store with a signed-in Xbox account, without a purchase, counts as one user in the month.
We conclude that these figures illustrate the difficulties of Microsoft and its Xbox brand in Europe. By comparison, it is estimated that Sony has managed to sell 45 million PS4 consoles in Europe and the Nintendo Switch has surpassed 7 million units in France alone.
And on PC?
Another interesting element is that Microsoft distinguishes between its store of applications or video games on Windows, while the two activities are well united in the Microsoft Store. It can be assumed that this is a result of the differences in treatment by Microsoft between its businesses. Indeed, the company has largely released the limitations of its Microsoft Store to application developers, in order to better shine against the App Store or the Google Play Store, without offering the same conditions for Xbox game developers.
According to figures from Microsoft, the Windows game store averages just 3 million users per month in the EU, compared to 33 million for the wider application store.
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