Hot off the back of its E3 press conferenceand the news that PS4 sales have now hit 60.4m worldwide, analyst firm IHS Markit now expects Sony’s unstoppable console to hit 69m units by the end of the year.
That’s almost double IHS’ expected install base of the Xbox One, which it estimates to hit around 36m by the end of 2017.
"Sony sales momentum for PS4 has continued into 2017," says IHS’ head of games research director Piers Harding-Rolls. "The PS4 Pro strategy has been successful with around 20 per cent of new sales of PS4 being the Pro edition since the launch of the new console.
"Sony PS4 Pro holds a pricing advantage over Microsoft’s Xbox One X and it is a cheaper price point coupled with a range of exclusives in 2017 and 2018 that will help the company maintain its market share."
Harding-Rolls was also impressed by Sony’s exclusive line-up, even though – like Microsoft – most of its big titles have been confined to early 2018 rather than this year.
"Even though Microsoft showed off a wide array of exclusives at yesterday’s E3 press event it has come in for some criticism as a number of key titles are not due until 2018," said Harding-Rolls. "Sony went toe-to-toe with Microsoft with a wide variety of exclusives, but again a number of the titles on show are for 2018 rather than 2017. Sony has secured some important third-party content exclusives not least for Destiny 2 from Activision Blizzard. Sony also has a pipeline of exclusive content from its collection of first-party studios, which are more numerous and overall produce more than Microsoft’s."
He also praised the platform holder’s PS VR strategy, saying the device is "an open goal" for Sony.
"Microsoft’s reticence to embark on a console based VR strategy until at least 2018 means that Sony has an opportunity to build a comprehensive VR lead during the rest of 2017. While the VR market is still embryonic, Sony’s VR strategy offers it a key differentiator beyond the multi-platform timed exclusive games which represent the traditional battleground between Microsoft and Sony. Sony is bringing its first-party studios to bear here, with a number of titles coming to the platform in 2017."