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Xbox Series X and S are Microsoft's fastest-selling consoles despite limited supplies

Xbox Series X
(Image credit: Future)

Sales for Xbox Series X and S have out-paced all previous Xbox console generations, according to Phil Spencer.

The boss of Xbox discussed the commercial performance of the two consoles on a recent New York Times podcast. The Xbox Series X and S were released 14 months ago on November 10, 2020, and Spencer says that "at this point, we've sold more of this generation of Xboxes, which is Xbox Series X and S, than we had any previous version of Xboxes."

There are two important qualifiers here. Firstly, Spencer obviously isn't referring to lifetime sales. The Xbox 360's total sales, which topped 85 million units by most estimates, remain unmatched within Microsoft, but the Xbox Series X and S have set a new record for the 14-month mark. 

It's also important to remember that this generation of Xbox consoles had the enormous benefit of launching with two different models with dramatically different price points, with the Xbox Series S positioned as a much more affordable option. There's a reason the Xbox Series S was the best-selling console during Black Friday 2021. 

At the same time, Microsoft, along with Sony and Nintendo, has also had to contend with unprecedented supply shortages and distribution bottlenecks primarily caused by the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. However, Spencer maintains that while new consoles are still hard to find – and may stay that way well into 2023, according to some reports – "it's not because supply is smaller than it's ever been." 

"Supply is actually as big as it’s ever been. It’s that demand is exceeding the supply for all of us," he says, acknowledging that the PS5 is also in short supply. "So it’s our job to get the supply there to meet that demand," he adds.

Demand will likely stay strong into 2022 as we look forward to these upcoming Xbox Series X games.

Austin freelanced for the likes of PC Gamer, Eurogamer, IGN, Sports Illustrated, and more while finishing his journalism degree, and he's been with GamesRadar+ since 2019. They've yet to realize that his position as a staff writer is just a cover up for his career-spanning Destiny column, and he's kept the ruse going with a focus on news and the occasional feature.