Escapist News Now: Xbox One Beats PS4 In Black Friday Sales

Xbox One Beats PS4 In Black Friday Sales

Data collected after Black Friday shows the Xbox One getting a huge lead over the PS4 in sales.

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Can we report the facts for once, please? This story is getting more and more rubbish every time I see it.

First off, the data is seemingly all over the place. This is easily demonstrated by quoting the major news outlets reporting it, all of which have completely different counts about how many receipts were actually tracked. This site claims it's 100k, another claims it's 83k, and I've seen other numbers reported as well. Considering the actual number is on the InfoScout website (102k), this really should not be that hard to report accurately. And yet despite getting the sample wrong, all of these sites are reporting the exact same percentages, which seems highly improbable and makes the report itself very suspect.

Second, the InfoScout website clearly states the following in its data methodology section:

Of over 102k shopping receipts tracked by InfoScout on Black Friday, slightly over 1,500 included purchases of a gaming console or console game.

So in other words, that's 31% of 1500 sales, not 31% of "over a hundred thousand" sales. Which means that this InfoScout report deals with an absolutely tiny and meaningless subset of the gaming community considering that both competitors have already outsold the 1 million mark.

And third, with a sample size that small, it's very difficult to argue that the data is in any way statistically significant. An error as simple as only tracking the data in one particular region of the country instead of performing proper sampling would be enough to throw this entire thing off. This is a sample of convenience, because only those who volunteered their receipts to InfoScout had their data collected. Also, the data is clearly labeled as a "projective" sample, not a "representative" one, meaning it's quite possible that it's been significantly exaggerated via some variation of number inflation to try and provide a sample of assumed sales given the limited data they had available to them.

So this is in no way a reliable report. Can we stop reporting it like it's fact, now? I mean, it's just basic number logic, people.

CriticKitten:
Can we report the facts for once, please? This story is getting more and more rubbish every time I see it.

So this is in no way a reliable report. Can we stop reporting it like it's fact, now? I mean, it's just basic number logic, people.

This.

You can't sell something that is sold out. There is nowhere on earth that the Xbox is outselling Playstation. On the new consoles anyway.

I have to wonder if this is some sort of deliberate misrepresentation of the facts. I mean, how can anyone look at the data and say "yep, the Xbox One is doing better"?

Oh man... just when I was so trained to believe anything Andrea Rene said...

Nobody should be surprised to see the Xbox win. All the discussions about which is the better console are moot, Xbox has always been massively more popular and popularity is all that counts. Price tag, acceptability, exclusives, etc. don't matter as much as having the right trademark logo on the side of your black box. I said long ago that Xbox was going to dominate and sell like crazy simply by virtue of being the Xbox.

cthulhuspawn82:
Nobody should be surprised to see the Xbox win. All the discussions about which is the better console are moot, Xbox has always been massively more popular and popularity is all that counts. Price tag, acceptability, exclusives, etc. don't matter as much as having the right trademark logo on the side of your black box. I said long ago that Xbox was going to dominate and sell like crazy simply by virtue of being the Xbox.

Xbox hasn't dominated anything as a brand from start to present day.

Having matched its next best competitor at absolute best (360 vs PS3), and getting absolutely curbstomped prior to that (21 million Xbox sales vs 155 million for PS2.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_game_consoles

CriticKitten:
Can we report the facts for once, please? This story is getting more and more rubbish every time I see it.

First off, the data is seemingly all over the place. This is easily demonstrated by quoting the major news outlets reporting it, all of which have completely different counts about how many receipts were actually tracked. This site claims it's 100k, another claims it's 83k, and I've seen other numbers reported as well. Considering the actual number is on the InfoScout website (102k), this really should not be that hard to report accurately. And yet despite getting the sample wrong, all of these sites are reporting the exact same percentages, which seems highly improbable and makes the report itself very suspect.

Second, the InfoScout website clearly states the following in its data methodology section:

Of over 102k shopping receipts tracked by InfoScout on Black Friday, slightly over 1,500 included purchases of a gaming console or console game.

So in other words, that's 31% of 1500 sales, not 31% of "over a hundred thousand" sales. Which means that this InfoScout report deals with an absolutely tiny and meaningless subset of the gaming community considering that both competitors have already outsold the 1 million mark.

And third, with a sample size that small, it's very difficult to argue that the data is in any way statistically significant. An error as simple as only tracking the data in one particular region of the country instead of performing proper sampling would be enough to throw this entire thing off. This is a sample of convenience, because only those who volunteered their receipts to InfoScout had their data collected. Also, the data is clearly labeled as a "projective" sample, not a "representative" one, meaning it's quite possible that it's been significantly exaggerated via some variation of number inflation to try and provide a sample of assumed sales given the limited data they had available to them.

So this is in no way a reliable report. Can we stop reporting it like it's fact, now? I mean, it's just basic number logic, people.

I heard the jury's still out on statistics.

Atmos Duality:

cthulhuspawn82:
Nobody should be surprised to see the Xbox win. All the discussions about which is the better console are moot, Xbox has always been massively more popular and popularity is all that counts. Price tag, acceptability, exclusives, etc. don't matter as much as having the right trademark logo on the side of your black box. I said long ago that Xbox was going to dominate and sell like crazy simply by virtue of being the Xbox.

Xbox hasn't dominated anything as a brand from start to present day.

Having matched its next best competitor at absolute best (360 vs PS3), and getting absolutely curbstomped prior to that (21 million Xbox sales vs 155 million for PS2.)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_best-selling_game_consoles

I just based my assertion on empirical evidence. It seems that the Xbox is the one you "see" more of in America. When they demo multi-platform games, its usually on the Xbox. Xbox is the console you almost always see in advertising campaigns. And it seems over 80% of the gaming videos I see online have those ABXY buttons on screen as opposed to play-station or keyboard controls.

Of course, I know that isn't proof of Xbox dominating the market, visibility =/= sales. But the level of visibility Xbox has in America almost makes the PS3 look like an "indie" console.

cthulhuspawn82:

I just based my assertion on empirical evidence.

What evidence?
You've asserted, but offered nothing to back it up.

Unless you mean the ENN report, which as Critic Kitten has pointed out is completely unreliable.
In fact, it's quite useless if you know how statistics, sample sizes and reliability are related.

el_kabong:

I heard the jury's still out on statistics.

I'll second that.
And I'll also second that as a result, this ENN "report" is worthless, and reeks of sensationalist tabloid journalism.

Atmos Duality:

cthulhuspawn82:

I just based my assertion on empirical evidence.

What evidence?
You've asserted, but offered nothing to back it up.

Unless you mean the ENN report, which as Critic Kitten has pointed out is completely unreliable.
In fact, it's quite useless if you know how statistics, sample sizes and reliability are related.

I meant empirical evidence in terms of "What I see and hear" as opposed to "What the charts tell me". That's why I went on to explain how I see a lot more of Xbox than Play-Station everywhere I look.

I know personal perception typically isn't as valuable as hard data, but sometimes it is. If all the scientific charts are telling you its raining outside, but you don't see rain outside your window, you can trust you perceptions over the data.

And, again, when talking about Black Friday sales you have to take into account availability. Sure, the Xbox outsold the PS4 on Black Friday. Why? Because you can wander in most anywhere and find an Xbox, while you can't find a PS4 for love or money. You can't outsell with what isn't there. Now, it could be said that the lack of availability shows a flaw in Sony's marketing, and sure, I won't argue much, but you simply can't pick a random shopping day and proclaim that means one console is winning over the other, unless on that day you can walk into anywhere and buy either. How many people wanting A New Console would have bought a PS4 if they could, but since they can't, got an Xbox? Who knows. And without that knowing, raw sales data is misdirection at best.

cthulhuspawn82:

Atmos Duality:

cthulhuspawn82:

I just based my assertion on empirical evidence.

What evidence?
You've asserted, but offered nothing to back it up.

Unless you mean the ENN report, which as Critic Kitten has pointed out is completely unreliable.
In fact, it's quite useless if you know how statistics, sample sizes and reliability are related.

I meant empirical evidence in terms of "What I see and hear" as opposed to "What the charts tell me". That's why I went on to explain how I see a lot more of Xbox than Play-Station everywhere I look.

I know personal perception typically isn't as valuable as hard data, but sometimes it is. If all the scientific charts are telling you its raining outside, but you don't see rain outside your window, you can trust you perceptions over the data.

A sample of one is not a large enough pool for data.

Beyond that, you are wrong. Yes, in America, the Xbox 360 sold better than the PS3. But everywhere else it was curbstomped by the PS3 (don't even ask about Japan where it was almost 7-1). In the end, they sold roughly evenly with the PS3 just edging it out in total worldwide sales. 360 also had the advantage of being cheaper and having a year to get a foothold. It lost both advantages this generation.

Current data indicates that the Xbox One is selling just fine, but that the PS4 is still the dominate selling system. The PS4 sold a million consoles in 24 hours in North America. The Xbox One sold a million consoles in 24 hours worldwide. Nothing to sneeze at, but certainly a weaker showing. This very site just had an article stating that the PS4 has officially sold 2.1 million consoles worldwide (having sold another 700,000 in Europe and Australia). PS4 has officially broken sales records in Europe. Sony themselves have proclaimed the PS4 the best North American launch in the brand's history and are forecasting selling 5 million units by next March.

Microsoft has yet to report their own November sales figures. So for the time being, we have very little to go on.

My personal prediction pretty much remains the same. Xbox One will sell fine, but will lag behind PS4 early on. Later on the numbers will probably even out with Xbox likely having higher sales in North America, and the PS4 largely taking other regions.

Saltyk:

Yes, in America, the Xbox 360 sold better than the PS3. But everywhere else it was curbstomped by the PS3 (don't even ask about Japan where it was almost 7-1).

Sorry if there was confusion, I thought it was understood that I was speaking in terms of the American market. I know the PS4 is doing better in all the other markets, but not in the land of Mountain Dew and Brofists.

cthulhuspawn82:
I meant empirical evidence in terms of "What I see and hear" as opposed to "What the charts tell me". That's why I went on to explain how I see a lot more of Xbox than Play-Station everywhere I look.

I know personal perception typically isn't as valuable as hard data, but sometimes it is. If all the scientific charts are telling you its raining outside, but you don't see rain outside your window, you can trust you perceptions over the data.

I think you have an enormous misunderstanding about how "charts" and "scientific research" work in general.

Anecdotal evidence (evidence you "see and hear" is largely irrelevant in statistics because it's clouded by personal biases.

And statistics merely report what has occurred or the prevailing attitude of a group at present. They do not forecast anything.

The statistics say that the 360 did not, in any way, "dominate" its competitor. And this report, as I've already pointed out, is being grossly misreported and is factually inaccurate to the point of being completely meaningless. So there are no hard data points supporting your assertions whatsoever.

On the other hand, we do know for a fact that the PS4 is up to a worldwide total of 2.1 million after releasing in other regions, and that it's become the fastest selling console in the UK with over a quarter of a million units sold in a relatively short span. So the stats are very clear: unless the Xbone managed some sort of recent miracle to push unit sales, the PS4 is almost undoubtedly beating it right now. Especially since their most recent report only states that the console is selling in record numbers, but conveniently fails to give a solid number for those sales (likely because it'd become an embarrassment to reveal if it's significantly lower than the PS4's).

cthulhuspawn82:

I know personal perception typically isn't as valuable as hard data, but sometimes it is.

It certainly isn't here. Personally, I've seen Sony push just as much exposure for the PS4 as Microsoft and Nintendo combined. But I'm not going to assume this is true everywhere else.

If all the scientific charts are telling you its raining outside, but you don't see rain outside your window, you can trust you perceptions over the data.

Locally, perhaps. But you can't use local empirical observations alone to accurately describe a larger system.

Which is exactly the problem with this video and this topic. They're trying to assert that the Xbone beat PS4 in ALL SALES for Black Friday by using an exceptionally limited (probably bad) sample.

It might not be raining in your exact location in metaphor, but that doesn't mean it isn't raining elsewhere, or even nearby.

(I am a meteorologist, ironically)

What? Was the "Buack Fwiday Bunduru" not a success?

TheMemoman:
Oh man... just when I was so trained to believe anything Andrea Rene said...

OH NO ALL MY HARD WORK HAS BEEN TARNISHED!!!!

CriticKitten:
Can we report the facts for once, please? This story is getting more and more rubbish every time I see it.

First off, the data is seemingly all over the place. This is easily demonstrated by quoting the major news outlets reporting it, all of which have completely different counts about how many receipts were actually tracked. This site claims it's 100k, another claims it's 83k, and I've seen other numbers reported as well. Considering the actual number is on the InfoScout website (102k), this really should not be that hard to report accurately. And yet despite getting the sample wrong, all of these sites are reporting the exact same percentages, which seems highly improbable and makes the report itself very suspect.

Second, the InfoScout website clearly states the following in its data methodology section:

Of over 102k shopping receipts tracked by InfoScout on Black Friday, slightly over 1,500 included purchases of a gaming console or console game.

So in other words, that's 31% of 1500 sales, not 31% of "over a hundred thousand" sales. Which means that this InfoScout report deals with an absolutely tiny and meaningless subset of the gaming community considering that both competitors have already outsold the 1 million mark.

And third, with a sample size that small, it's very difficult to argue that the data is in any way statistically significant. An error as simple as only tracking the data in one particular region of the country instead of performing proper sampling would be enough to throw this entire thing off. This is a sample of convenience, because only those who volunteered their receipts to InfoScout had their data collected. Also, the data is clearly labeled as a "projective" sample, not a "representative" one, meaning it's quite possible that it's been significantly exaggerated via some variation of number inflation to try and provide a sample of assumed sales given the limited data they had available to them.

So this is in no way a reliable report. Can we stop reporting it like it's fact, now? I mean, it's just basic number logic, people.

I appreciate your thoroughness in your response, but did you listen to my entire video? I mentioned that this report contains projections and did not include additional factors like supply levels, online sales, and global sales. Furthermore, it is just about sales for Black Friday. I did not say the Xbox One beat the PS4 in sales overall because we won't know that until Microsoft and Sony stop making the consoles years from now. Hopefully Microsoft will release sales numbers before the end of the year, but remember, the "launch window" for both PS4 and X1 goes until March 2014 so we won't have any hard numbers to compare fairly until then anyway.

That said I'm surprised at how well the xbone is doing despite the previous outrage and the fact that it still includes the kinect. Also based on zero punctuation and Roosterteeth this whole thing where you have to install the games is bullshit. It seems like consoles have been going backwards, the PS2 for example was backwards compatible and you never had to install anything.

andrearene:
I appreciate your thoroughness in your response, but did you listen to my entire video? I mentioned that this report contains projections and did not include additional factors like supply levels, online sales, and global sales.

Correct, and yet not correct. It does not include online sales or the like, no, but it also does not include all standard brick-and-mortar sales, either. It only includes receipts submitted by volunteering users to InfoScout, which means it's not even an accurate sampling of all Black Friday sales figures.

In other words, even if the sample was significant enough to mean anything (and at only 1500 console sales, it's not even close to significant), it immediately suffers from an inherent self-selection bias (because only those who willfully participate in the data collection are being included) that will distort the validity of the conclusion.

Furthermore, it is just about sales for Black Friday. I did not say the Xbox One beat the PS4 in sales overall because we won't know that until Microsoft and Sony stop making the consoles years from now. Hopefully Microsoft will release sales numbers before the end of the year, but remember, the "launch window" for both PS4 and X1 goes until March 2014 so we won't have any hard numbers to compare fairly until then anyway.

I am well aware of that, and nowhere in my post did I say anything about the sales not referring specifically to Black Friday. I simply pointed out that the data in question is quite thoroughly useless because of the limited sample size, the various biases associated in the collection of the data, and the general lack of reliability in the reports of the data to date.

As for the notion that we won't know the overall sales until the consoles stop being made, that's not actually true, because we can still glean relatively close statistics from what has been reported by the companies themselves. Certainly, they won't be "final" numbers and will still be increasing even after being reported, but that doesn't mean they were false numbers.

For example, we have reports straight from Sony that the PS4 has already broken 2.1 million global sales. Which means that in the two and a half weeks it's been out, it's sold well over a million more units than it did on its opening day. And a good portion of that came from them blowing away the previous "fastest console sales in the UK" record during that same Black Friday weekend.

Also, we know that Microsoft has chosen not to release their sales data ever since Sony made these announcements. Thus, it's entirely possible that the actual Black Friday sales "lead" is significantly smaller than this and other websites are reporting, and thus if they were to release their actual sales figures, it would obliterate the narrative being made right now. Expect Microsoft to wait until they've had enough time to bolster themselves to another significant milestone before reporting their data, so that they don't actually have to admit that their Black Friday sales weren't as good as reports like this would have people believe.

I actually don't see how we can even have any good data about this contest. As far as I know, the consoles were selling out everywhere to this point, although they "may" be in stock now. How can you judge which console is "selling more" when both consoles sell every unit they produce.

Probably should tell people what a good sample size is.
For instance, you want at least 2% of all sales reported, and gathered in a non biased way.
For statistics this is a good base line to base your predictions off of (assuming the data set is very large 2% of 10 isn't going to work :P ).

CriticKitten:

In other words, even if the sample was significant enough to mean anything (and at only 1500 console sales, it's not even close to significant), it immediately suffers from an inherent self-selection bias (because only those who willfully participate in the data collection are being included) that will distort the validity of the conclusion.

[snip]

All other possible concerns about the data aside (I don't know or particularly care enough to check), but a sample of 1500 is more than sufficient a sample size to draw conclusions from. The only thing a larger sample size does is reduce the variation in the sample. The only question is at what level of significance does the difference become statistically significant.

Also, regarding the self-selection bias, so long as you specifically state that that any conclusions are made about people who would choose to participate, they remain valid. Dunno whether that happened here, but the point remains.

smithy_2045:
All other possible concerns about the data aside (I don't know or particularly care enough to check), but a sample of 1500 is more than sufficient a sample size to draw conclusions from. The only thing a larger sample size does is reduce the variation in the sample. The only question is at what level of significance does the difference become statistically significant.

That is simply not correct.

1500 out of a collection of 102k sales means that only 1.5% of the provided receipts are actual sales in the area being measured. And there were undoubtedly way more than 102k receipts printed on Black Friday, one of the largest shopping seasons in the entire United States calendar year. That is not a significant enough sample to draw any sort of conclusion no matter how you stretch the numbers. A relevant and appropriate sample size would need to be much, much larger than 1500 in a country of over 300 million people.

Also, regarding the self-selection bias, so long as you specifically state that that any conclusions are made about people who would choose to participate, they remain valid. Dunno whether that happened here, but the point remains.

Except that this is not what they're doing. This was specifically stated to be a "projection" of all Black Friday sales, using this statistically insignificant sample as the basis for that projection.

Ergo, the article as written is factually inaccurate in every possible way.

 

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