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Somehow, Nintendo Switch outsold the PS5 and Xbox Series X in their launch month

Nintendo Switch Lite
(Image credit: TechRadar)
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Well, that's quite something. It looks like the Nintendo Switch family of systems – including the handheld-only Nintendo Switch Lite – has managed to stay top dog in November regarding US console sales, leaving the newly-launched PS5 and Xbox Series X lagging behind.

The Switch and Switch Lite garnered a total 1.35 million sales in the US alone throughout November, according to analytics firm NPD Group (via Business Wire (opens in new tab)). 

Its report also states that the Nintendo hardware is somehow selling even more in 2020 than the previous year – around half a million units more, to a total of 6.92 million – despite having launched three years previously. We're definitely a long way from the era of the much-maligned Wii U, then.

We don't quite have firm numbers for sales of the PS5 and Xbox Series X, but the former console is estimated to have sold around 2 million units worldwide across its two launch dates – November 12 and November 19 – with stock shrivelling up soon after. It's worth noting that the PS5 did top Switch sales in the UK (opens in new tab), though.

Same old

Of course, the PS5 and Xbox Series X are far more expensive consoles – with the exception of the Xbox Series S, which at $299 / £249 is priced pretty near the RRP of the Nintendo Switch. Jumping on board with a new console generation hasn't been made easy, either, with demand vastly outstripping stock and so-called scalpers using bots to net thousands of consoles from online retail outlets.

And the Switch? Cheap, with an even cheaper Switch Lite alternative, and seemingly plenty of stock still to go around, despite some supply issues hitting earlier in the year.

We know that PS5 and Xbox Series X stock isn't likely to start meeting demand until well into 2021 – with both consoles expected to get price cuts only in its latter half, if the console makers feel a need to amid so much interest.

We've been hearing rumors of a Nintendo Switch upgrade coming in 2021 or later, possibly with 4K visuals or a Mini-LED screen on the handheld device – but regardless, it looks like Nintendo isn't exactly short on demand for its current series of Switch machines. What reason, then, to mess with a winning formula?

Henry St Leger
Henry St Leger

Henry is a freelance technology journalist. Before going freelance, he spent more than three years at TechRadar reporting on TVs, projectors and smart speakers as the website's Home Cinema Editor – and has been interviewed live on both BBC World News and Channel News Asia, discussing the future of transport and 4K resolution televisions respectively. As a graduate of English Literature and persistent theatre enthusiast, he'll usually be found forcing Shakespeare puns into his technology articles, which he thinks is what the Bard would have wanted. Bylines also include Edge, T3, and Little White Lies.