The PS5 and Xbox Series X and S have been out for well over a year now, with the Microsoft and Sony systems debuting back in November 2020. In this short space of time both new PlayStation and Xbox consoles have experienced widespread stock shortages around the world. And in the face of this Sony’s PS5 console has taken an early sales lead, with the PlayStation 5 believed to have hit 18.76million sales in its lifetime compared to the Xbox Series X and S’s 12.81million. But that doesn’t tell the full story entirely.

New analysis from VGChartz has looked at how well consoles have sold for the year so far, compared to the same period in 2021.

And 2022’s numbers make for much better reading for Microsoft.

According to VGChartz, between January 1 and February 19 2021 the PS5 sold over half a million more units than the Xbox Series X and S.

For this period the PS5 reportedly sold 1,271,299 units compared to the Xbox Series X and S selling 721,439 units.

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But 2022’s numbers are much closer. Between the start of this year and February 19 2022 the PS5 sold 1,116,602 units.

And during the same period the Xbox Series X and S sold 1,021,884 units – which is less than 100,000 off the PS5’s sales numbers.

While the PS5 has still sold more than the Xbox Series X and S this year, the gap between the two consoles is much closer.

This is all the more impressive given the amount of high-profile releases Sony has planned for the first few months of 2022, with Horizon Forbidden West and Gran Turismo 7 the heavy hitting exclusives heading to PlayStation in the first quarter of 2022.

The sales period that VGChartz analysed included the day Horizon Forbidden West launched (February 18), but didn’t factor in when Gran Turismo 7 hit shelves (March 4).

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Given how sporadic PS5 restocks are, we could see PS5 sales numbers for 2022 so far jump following the January 1 to February 19 2022 period which VGChartz analsyed, driven by demand for titles like Gran Turismo 7 and the new Horizon game.

But either way, the sales numbers Xbox has been posting so far has been highly impressed.

What is causing improved sales performance for the Xbox Series X and S in 2022 compared to 2021 is up for debate.

A number of key factors spring to mind – including the wide avaliability of the Xbox Series S console, the hugely impressive library of games available with Xbox Game Pass, the release of the critically acclaimed Halo Infinite and Forza Horizon 5 last year, and – of course – Microsoft’s jaw-dropping announcement that it was acquiring Call of Duty makers Activision Blizzard.

We’ll have to keep a close eye to see how the rest of the year turns out in terms of console sales figures. But so far this generation has shown fascinating, different approaches by both Sony and Microsoft, with early signs potentially showing Xbox is on course for its strongest generation since the 360 era.

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