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PS5 Breaks The Switch's Five-Year Streak As Japan's Best-Selling Console

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The Nintendo Switch is one of the most successful consoles of all time, behind only Sony's PlayStation 2 and the Game Boy, in the all-time sales rankings. It's an impressive feat and the hybrid continues to sell, but the extraordinary run that Nintendo has had does now appear to be slowing as the Switch has finally been unseated as Japan's best-selling console in monthly figures.

It was Sony's PlayStation 5 that broke Nintendo's phenomenal five-year run. February 2023 was the first month since February 2018 that the Switch was not number one in Japan (according to Game Data Library). It's an astonishing achievement but Sony is now enjoying some major sales success with the PS5.

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The PS5 is selling much better than the year before so far. This would be due to the lower supply Sony had the year previous, and could also be related to pent-up demand. Whatever the specific reason, the numbers don't lie: the PS5 is shifting like hotcakes. February 2023 PS5 sales in Japan were up 457 percent year over year. Here is Japan Game-industry watcher Genki with the precise numbers:

As you can see, it's a drastic increase from last year's February, and the big rise in PS5s sold will be a big confidence booster for Sony, especially as it seems to be occuring not only in its native Japan. Across Europe, including the UK, it seems Sony is having a bumper 2023 so far.

At the end of January, Sony kicked off a big marketing campaign, featuring the likes of Kratos, Spider-Man, and Aloy, among others, spearheading an advertising campaign designed to let consumers know it was high time to get onboard the PS5 wagon. Sony has been keen to let everyone know that the PS5 is now properly stocked and much more easier to purchase. This is in stark contrast to the previous two years when pandemic-related supply issues meant it was tough for customers to get their hands on one.

As for the Nintendo Switch, sales were down 41 percent year over year for the same time period. Rumours are that Nintendo could be gearing up for a Switch 2 or Pro version of the console, or even something "in between".

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