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[Update] Microsoft Will Focus Primarily On Xbox Live Usership, Not Console Shipments

by Mike Futter on Oct 22, 2015 at 02:20 PM

Update: Microsoft will not be using console shipments as its primary metric for success beginning with this quarter, we have been told. The company is more focused on engagement, leading it to choose Xbox Live usership as its leading statistic.

While that doesn't mean we won't hear about console shipment statistics, it won't be something we should expect to see every quarter. Microsoft also indicates that the 39 million Xbox Live users reported today are more narrowly defined now. We've been told that this metric now reflects users that have logged in within the past month. No differentiation has been made between gold (paying) and silver (free) members.

Original Story (October 22 at 4:29 p.m. Central):

Microsoft has announced the results of its first fiscal quarter for the current year. The company has not revealed how many consoles it shipped, which is a change from past reporting practices.

The company does indicate that total gaming hardware revenue is down year-over-year, attributing the decline to lower sales of Xbox 360. A further breakdown across console types is unavailable. Xbox Live has seen a boom over last year at the same time, though.  Usership is up 28 percent to 39 million. 

The Xbox group is now reported as part of Microsoft’s personal computing division. With the release of the New Xbox One Experience next month and deeper integration with PC since the launch of Windows 10, Microsoft appears to be unifying that category.

Click to enlarge.

Gaming revenue was up 6 percent when adjusted for constant currency. Corporate revenue dropped year-over-year by 12 percent to $20.4 billion, with net income up 2 percent to $4.6 billion. 

We’ve inquired with Microsoft about Xbox One shipments and will update should we receive a response.

[Source: Microsoft]


Our Take
This move away from console shipment reporting may be in line with Xbox boss Phil Spencer’s recent statements that the company isn’t as focused on the competitive nature of the sector. I suspect that after the holiday quarter, there might be good news enough to share more specifics, though.