Sony’s PlayStation brand has dethroned Nintendo as the most successful hardware manufacturer for the first time in eight years, Japanese publication Nikkei has confirmed.
The period ended March 2014 saw overall PlayStation hardware - namely, PlayStation 4, PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2, PlayStation Vita and PlayStation Portable - sell 18.7 million units globally.
By comparison, Nintendo shifted 16.1 million units of hardware, encompassing Nintendo Wii U, Wii, 3DS, and DS. Microsoft came in third with 11.6 million Xbox One and Xbox 360s sold worldwide.
Joshua Raymond, Cityindex's Chief Market Strategist, told PSU:
"Whilst this marks an important milestone for Sony, I don’t think now is a time to pop champagne. Undoubtedly this growth has been dictated by the release of Sony’s latest PS4 console (which launched in November last year) yet there remain warning signs over the health of the traditional gaming industry in general as gamers continue to move to smartphone games in increasing numbers. Both Sony and Nintendo have endured volatile sales of late, with Nintendo suffering a 30% drop in sales annually, whilst Sony saw a 20% drop, a factor improved by the timing of its PS4 launch
"Microsoft’s Xbox One launch needs to watched carefully, though Sony’s sales remain some 60% higher than Microsoft, whilst Sony’s agreement to launch a joint venture with Shanghai Oriental Pearl Group opens a huge opportunity for the group in China. Nevertheless, short term spikes from the release of new games consoles mustn’t detract from the larger structural questions that remain over the industry."
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