“The [positive] change started to happen when Titanfall was released in March,” Eagle said. “It’s been a hugely successful title and the start of what I believe to be is the momentum shift.” Improvements including the Kinectless SKU, a price drop for premium models, regular firmware updates and enhancements to the Games with Gold service have all helped swing the balance of power back in Microsoft’s favor, according to the exec.
There’s still a long road ahead, however. “There’s still work to do to increase sales,” Eagle added. “We do need to see this grow and continue over a period of time. With such a strong line-up of games coming out over the next six months, I think that’s going to increase momentum. We won’t stop listening and responding. If that means we have to change in the future based on what people are asking for, then we’re completely committed to doing that.”
The reality for Microsoft is that it’s lagging a long way behind in terms of sales numbers. Sony had sold seven million PS4s by April 2014 and has been the top-selling console in the U.S. for five straight months. Microsoft, meanwhile, had managed to shift five million Xbox One consoles by April, though neither company releases definitive sales numbers on a regular basis. Microsoft recently boosted its console’s visibility with a series of adverts featuring Aaron Paul.
The last word goes to Harvey Eagle. “There’s a few things I’d like us to achieve [in the future],” he says “If I take a long-term view, I want Xbox to play a role in bringing more people into gaming. I think it’s incumbent on those who make console platforms to ultimately grow the market. Otherwise we’re just trading the same customers amongst each other.”