Sony’s videogame console has sold more than 18.5 million units since its November, 2013 launch, Sony Computer Entertainment says. The sales number includes 4.1 million sold worldwide during the holiday season. It comes after the console’s online network was temporarily hobbled by a hacker group’s distributed denial-of-service attacks and their aftermath that began on Christmas Eve.
Despite those frustrations for gamers, the PS4 remains the market leader among the Big Three console makers, though sales reports suggest that both Microsoft’s Xbox One and Nintendo’s Wii U substantially perked up their own sales this holiday season.
Microsoft sharply discounted the Xbox One, cutting a base system’s price to $50 less than the $399 PS4 and typically including either free games, months of free online network subscriptions or both. Nintendo, first to launch a current-generation machine but last in sales, benefitted all fall by the long-awaited arrival of the latest installments of several of its most beloved franchises, including Mario Kart, Super Smash Bros. as well as its hot-selling smart-toy add-ons called Amiibo, which are similar to both the Disney Infinity product line and Activision’s Skylanders.
Sony said the PS4 sales represent “the fastest and strongest growth” in the 20-year history of the PlayStation platform, now in its fourth generation. The company also said it has more than 10.9 million subscribers to the pay version of its online PlayStation Network, called PlayStationPlus. The $50-a-year service gives free access to some games and powers the online multiplayer gaming functions of hot-selling titles such as Destiny and Call of Duty: Advanced Warfare.
The numbers reported today are through either Saturday or Sunday for most of the 123 countries and territories where the PS4 is sold.