PlayStation 4 is about to hit a milestone few consoles have achieved before

Eric Abent - Apr 26, 2019, 12:43 pm CDT
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PlayStation 4 is about to hit a milestone few consoles have achieved before

Sony delivered its financial results for the 2018 fiscal year today, and its gaming arm is still leading the charge in terms of success. Though PS4 sales dropped a little bit year-over-year, Sony still managed to sell 17.8 million units throughout the fiscal year as a whole. It made only 2.6 million of those sales in the final quarter of the year (January 1st, 2019 to March 31st), which is traditionally a slow time for the games industry.

Despite the minor slip up in hardware sales over the course of the year – the PlayStation 4 sold 19 million PS4s in FY2017 – there’s still reason for Sony to be excited about where the PlayStation 4 is at. Life-to-date, the PlayStation 4 has sold 96.8 million units, which means that it will almost certainly cross 100 million lifetime sales within the next few months.

The PS4 joining the 100 million club is essentially inevitable now, and that’s an achievement few consoles can boast. In fact, when the PS4 crosses that threshold, it’ll be only the fourth home console to do so, or the sixth if we want to count handheld gaming devices too. The PlayStation 2 is currently the best-selling console of all time, with more than 155 million units sold.

The PS4 is unlikely to eclipse the PlayStation 2 – and, indeed, we may never see a console hit that mark again – but it could certainly challenge some of the other consoles on that list. The Nintendo DS is sitting right behind the PlayStation 2 at 154.02 million units sold, with the Game Boy/Game Boy Color coming in third with a combined 118.69 million sales. It’s possible that the PS4 claims third place from the Game Boy, as Sony expects to sell another 16 million units in the next fiscal year.

That won’t be quite enough to surpass the Game Boy, but by the time Sony officially discontinues the PlayStation 4 years from, it may have garnered the last few million sales it needs to claim third place. What’s more likely for fiscal year 2019 is the PlayStation 4 surpassing the lifetime sales of the original PlayStation and Wii, which both sit just north of 100 million.

We’ll see what happens from here, but even though sales of the PS4 are slowing down as Sony begins to shift its attention to the PlayStation 5, the machine seems poised to become one of the best-selling consoles of all time. Sony seems to be gearing up for a late 2020 release for the PlayStation 5, giving the PlayStation 4 more than a year to rack up additional sales before there’s a shiny new machine on the block. One thing is for sure: It’ll be interesting to see where the PlayStation 4 winds up among the most popular consoles in gaming history.


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