Microsoft’s Aaron Greenberg says a large part of the growth of the Xbox 360 user base is coming at the expense of Sony as many PlayStation 2 owners are now opting for the Microsoft console rather than the PlayStation 3 when upgrading to the current generation.
Greenberg is well known for being Microsoft’s most aggressive front man in the ongoing public relations battle between the Xbox 360 and the PlayStation 3, spending almost as much time slagging Sony and its product as he does singing the praises of his own. The recent release of NPD sales figures for February once again brought out his attack dog tendencies as he found himself unable to gloat over the 360’s rising fortunes without also sticking it to its rival.
Both systems saw sales growth in February but it was the Xbox 360 that came out on top, selling 391,000 units compared to 276,000 PlayStation 3 systems.”You can’t underestimate that we’re half the price of the PS3 at a time when consumers were looking for great value,” Greenberg said. “The PS3 was down in February two percent even with the launch of Killzone 2 — that’s months of year-over-year declines. Xbox continues to head north while the PS3 is heading south. We’re gaining share.”
“What we’re finding in our research is that a large portion of the volume we’re driving with Xbox 360 purchasers is actually PS2 owners choosing Xbox for the next generation,” he continued. “We’re switching people from the PlayStation brand over to the Xbox brand.”
Greenberg claimed that not only is the significantly lower price of the Xbox 360 attracting new customers but so is the fact that many games once strongly associated with the PlayStation are transitioning to the Microsoft platform. The Xbox 360 version of Street Fighter IV outsold the PlayStation 3 edition and he said early word is that Resident Evil 5 is shaping up the same way. “Not only is [Resident Evil 5] selling more, but we did a limited edition Elite bundle with that as well – so we’ve obviously benefited from having this deep partnership with Capcom, and we’re excited to have the Resident Evil franchise for the first time ever on our platform,” he said. “That follows in the steps of [franchises like] Grand Theft Auto — and we all know Final Fantasy is coming — that have been historically associated with PlayStation.”