January NPD: PS4 punches back at Xbox One, both beat 3DS

January's NPD shows PS4 and Xbox One switching places in their great and terrible dance of hardware sales, but both managed to edge out 3DS this time.


Oh, what exciting times for the gaming industry. Now that both of the new consoles are out, we get to watch as they exchange blows from month to month. NPD data showed Xbox One beating out PlayStation 4 last month, and now the PS4 has countered by leading for this month. We're sure to see the two locked in this struggle for quite a while, so you may as well relax and get comfortable while you settle down with some sales data.

Interestingly, NPD announced that PS4 led overall hardware sales in January, followed by Xbox One. That indicates that both of them beat 3DS, which won overall hardware sales for 2013 and tends to win month-by-month as well. Nintendo's plucky handheld won the day even in the busy shopping season of December, but come January the new consoles took the lead.

This January comes with a wrinkle, too. Every five or six years, NPD says, it needs to include a "leap week" in its sales figuring to keep the weeks aligned properly. That made this year's January a five-week period, as opposed to last year's four-week period. Hardware sales were up 17% year-over-year, but taking the leap week into account, sales were up 47%.

Physical software sales were less impressive, having fallen 25%. The actual titles topping the list are unsurprising, and not a single new game made the list in the sleepy release month of January. With the exception of Minecraft and Tomb Raider replacing last month's Just Dance 2014 and Skylanders Swap Force, the games represented remained the same from December, even if the order was a bit shaken up.

    Top 10 Games (New Physical Retail only; new releases bolded)

    • Call Of Duty: Ghosts (360, PS3, XBO, PS4, NWU, PC)

    • NBA 2K14 (PS4, 360, XBO, PS3, PC)

    • Battlefield 4 (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3, PC)

    • Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag (360, PS4, XBO, PS3, NWU, PC)

    • Grand Theft Auto V (360, PS3)

    • Madden NFL 25 (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3)

    • Minecraft (360)

    • FIFA 14 (PS4, XBO, PS3, 360, PSV)

    • Lego Marvel Super Heroes (360, XBO, PS3, PS4, 3DS, NWU, PSV, PC)

    • Tomb Raider (PS4, XBO, 360, PS3)

From The Chatty
  • reply
    February 13, 2014 4:30 PM

    Steve Watts posted a new article, January NPD: PS4 punches back at Xbox One, both beat 3DS.

    January's NPD shows PS4 and Xbox One switching places in their great and terrible dance of hardware sales, but both managed to edge out 3DS this time.

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        February 13, 2014 6:25 PM

        Wow, interesting. Well, it seems to match up with anecdotal evidence from what I see an here in retail stores. Move places seem to have XBO's in stock, but PS4's are nowhere to be seen.

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          February 13, 2014 6:32 PM

          Which is funny because there are no games for either (still playing the hell out of AC4 on the PS).

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            February 13, 2014 6:47 PM

            Seriously. Just wait for some damn games.

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            February 13, 2014 7:14 PM

            Well... 'no games' is going a bit far. AC4, Tomb Raider, Resogun, Don't Starve and Outlast are all keeping me pretty busy so far.

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              February 13, 2014 8:17 PM

              8 of the top 10 games listed above are available for both xbo and ps4

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                February 14, 2014 6:28 AM

                And most of them run and/or look better on PS4...

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                  February 14, 2014 8:42 AM

                  maybe but i was just commenting on how there are games. not a large variety yet but there is not a lot that came out for other platforms in the same time period.

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                    February 14, 2014 8:59 AM

                    Oh, ok. I guess I misunderstood what you were saying there.

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            February 13, 2014 8:16 PM

            there's not really many games coming out for any platform around now. it's the lull of after xmas. i'm excited for all of the smaller games that have been trickling out. will be picking up strider next week

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          February 13, 2014 9:19 PM

          I went PS4 because they haven't even realeased the XBO over here. I had to go to 6 stores to find a place with them in stock.

          So far I'm pretty happy with the purchase.

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        February 13, 2014 6:32 PM

        We reached out to Microsoft for its sales result, but it declined to comment. Nintendo also did not update its hardware numbers. Sony, however, confirmed that the PS4 doubled Xbox One’s sales.


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          February 13, 2014 9:20 PM

          "Whatever they said...we doubled it!"

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          February 13, 2014 10:03 PM

          Here's the thing. Sony thinks shipped = sold. MS reports sales when they announce their numbers, not shipped. This has always been the case. MS tries to spin Sony's number as shipped trying to say there is lots of inventory on shelves, and Sony spins it by saying sold.

          Sony may also have been talking worldwide "shipped" vs US only numbers. It's possible they "shipped" twice what the Xbox One sold worldwide.

          Personally I think they are both good machines, giving a slight edge to PS4 atm. In terms of the market though, they are very close. If you think in terms of the console market when the PS1 launched, and MS didn't even have a console to now, MS is doing a great job of taking and keeping it's market share while Sony has lost a lot of share compared to PS1 days, but has been able to hold off MS from taking more than 50% share. The fight is far from over, and as gamers, other than exclusives not trading hands, we win in the end with competition. The userbase squabbles are just silly business.

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          February 14, 2014 12:01 AM

          These numbers are from NPD people. They are researched outside of Microsoft Sony or Nintendo internal sales numbers. The actual numbers from NPD are technically protected data now so that's why you never see hard lists anymore. They are just numbers derived from various hints provided by people with access to the actual numbers. Of course Sony and Microsoft have these numbers as well but they are not supposed to provide the numbers of a competitor.

          Any responses to NPD requests are also usually PR so we always see the trend where the winner is pretty specific about their win and the losers spin it to focus on something else more positive or just avoid the questions.

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        February 13, 2014 6:36 PM

        Woah, I didn't think we'd see one outperform the other by this much in the US. I'm also reading that Sony is claiming they are still largely supply constrained.

        Be interested to see what Titanfall actually does for Microsoft. They are betting a lot on it and I don't think they are making the wrong move by doing so.

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          February 13, 2014 6:48 PM

          if titanfall weren't coming for pc i would probably use it as an excuse to buy an xbox one

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            February 14, 2014 6:42 AM

            Titanfall looks fun, but is not a game worth $560.

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        February 13, 2014 8:59 PM

        I think we're going to see an increase in XB1 sales starting this month.

        Anecdotally I've been hearing that sales for the system have been going up recently. My guess is because of Titanfall, especially because of this recent beta that is basically only a beta in name.

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        February 14, 2014 12:33 AM

        I wonder how much would PS4 sell if they did not have supply problems.

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      February 14, 2014 5:58 AM

      It looks like amazon has PS4's in stock right now. I wonder what the next sales report will look like.

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      February 14, 2014 12:37 PM

      and ps4 hasn't even launched in japan yet....

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