Microsoft is having one excellent year in terms of gaming. Announcing its financials for the first quarter of 2021, which ended on 31 March, it’s clear that business is booming for the Xbox division. While it makes sense that those numbers would be higher, considering we’re living in the shadow of still very new Xbox Series X/S, they’re much higher than I think anyone expected them to do. It also helps that Microsoft finished up its acquisition of Zenimax and continues to push Game Pass, easily the best service currently be offering to gamers.
Daniel Ahmad, analyst for Niko Partners, took to Twitter to explain what all those percentages and numbers equated to. In terms of actual figures, gaming revenue was $3.53 billion for the Q1 2021 which is a 50% jump from the same time frame last year. Content and software sales increased by a not insignificant 34% (largely thanks to Game Pass) and while the least surprising increase is also the one that looks the best: Xbox hardware sales jumped by 232% year-over-year. Again, that massive spike makes sense considering that most people were likely holding off on purchasing an Xbox until the Series X was dropped. Still, that number does look great on a spreadsheet.
Xbox was a major contributor to the overall revenue earned by Microsoft. The company earned a total of $41.7 billion, making a profit of $15.5 billion in the process, which is up by 44% from last year’s profits. If there’s a lesson in any of this it’s that people really like buying next gen consoles. Oh, and people really like playing games when they’re locked in their homes due to a global pandemic. So there’s that too.
Last Updated: April 28, 2021