PS5 is outselling the Xbox Series X|S up to 10 times in Japan.
Despite its popularity with Americans and Europeans, the Japanese market has always been a challenge for Microsoft’s Xbox consoles. Why? Both Sony and Nintendo call the country home, after all. This was mirrored in 2021 with the sales of the PlayStation 5, which greatly outsold the Xbox Series X in terms of sales.
These statistics, published in Famitsu, have shared the sales data for each platform, as has been usual in the Japanese market in recent years. The Nintendo Switch continues to top the market with 5.3 million systems sold, but the PlayStation 5 is unquestionably the star of this report.
Sony is almost 10 steps ahead of Xbox in Japan
Xbox’s ongoing difficulties in Japan are nothing new. Perhaps hardware sales aren’t as terrible as they appear, but Microsoft’s main issue is software that appeals to the Japanese market. Sony’s system managed to sell 942,798 units in Japan in 2021, a figure that appears modest when compared to the Switch but is significant when compared to the Xbox X Series.
The Xbox Series X|S only sold 95,958 copies in Japan throughout 2021, considerably behind the PS5. In fact, the PS4 even outperformed Microsoft’s next-gen console, selling 103,786 units in Japan last year. Again, this contrasts sharply from the American and European markets where Xbox is always at least competitive – if not the market leader, as with the Xbox 360.
Japan remains a tough market for Xbox. Will we see future growth for Xbox in the Japanese market? Let’s see how this new generation of consoles, which has had a rocky start due to hardware shortages for both PS5 and Xbox Series X|S, develops. Still, the early signs are not particularly positive for Microsoft in this key video game market.