In a statement to The Verge, senior director of Xbox console product marketing Cindy Walker revealed that Xbox One production actually ended in 2020.
Previously, we knew that Microsoft had discontinued the Xbox One X and digital-only Xbox One S just before launching the Xbox Series X in November 2020. Now it appears that retailers were quietly left to sell through any remaining Xbox One S units as well.
However, despite ending Xbox One production, the tech giant has managed to consistently keep the newer Xbox Series S in stock at certain retailers across the US and the UK.
Xbox boss Phil Spencer told The Verge shortly after the Xbox Series X/S launch in 2020 that Microsoft had built more Xbox Series S chips with the belief that the more affordable Series S would win out at retail.
“We can actually build more of the Series S [chips] in the same [chip] die space as we can the Series X,” said Spencer.
Microsoft's decision to discontinue its older console line is the opposite of Sony's alleged strategy with the PS4. A recent Bloomberg report said that Sony has increased PS4 production in a bid to offset the demand for PS5 consoles and to "keep gamers within the PlayStation ecosystem."
According to Bloomberg, instead of ceasing production of PS4 units, Sony has instead ordered assembly partners to produce additional PlayStation 4 consoles throughout the end of 2022, which superseded the company's initial plans to "discontinue assembly at the end of 2021."
As a result, about a million PS4 consoles will hit store shelves this year alone. This means consumers will still have a chance at enjoying older titles from Sony's catalog of PlayStation titles without having to find a PlayStation 5 in stock. Over a year into the PS5's life cycle, buyers are still struggling to find the console, with demand continuing to outpace supply.
Analysis: should Sony have made an Xbox Series S-like console?
Even though the PS4 is a more economical alternative for players who may be looking to dive into the PlayStation library, it still isn't a viable alternative to the PS5. It also isn't that easy to buy a PS4 right now.
Microsoft is at least offering players a way to experience the newer titles players are clamoring for with its digital-only Xbox Series S, as the more affordable Xbox is still a capable next-gen console.
Though there are a few sacrifices to be made when opting for the more affordable Series S, like its lack of disc drive and storage space, it’s still an excellent option for anyone looking to partake in the buffet of gaming options and services that Microsoft offers like Xbox Game Pass.
With supply issues likely to drag on throughout this year, securing an Xbox Series S might become a more appealing alternative to those who want a more next-gen experience and aren't willing to wait.
- Xbox One S vs Xbox Series S: what's the difference?
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Brittany Vincent is an accomplished freelance video game, technology, and entertainment writer whose work has been featured in various online and print publications. She’s been writing professionally for 15 years and her work can be found in dozens of print and digital publications such as Variety, Playboy, Rolling Stone, Wired, Maxim, Official Xbox Magazine, and more.