In the love affair gamers have with the two next-gen consoles, it appears that the PlayStation 4 is winning more affection than the Xbox One. An NPD report on January sales in the US has shown that Sony’s PlayStation 4 sold almost twice the number of consoles as Microsoft’s Xbox One.

NPD tracks videogame-related retail sales, and releases monthly reports on sales figures for both game software and hardware, including consoles. Its findings for December indicated that more Xbox Ones were sold than PlayStation 4s, but in the company’s latest report it appears the tables have turned: January saw gamers buying PlayStation 4s over Xbox Ones by a factor of almost two to one.

In a Q&A on the Sony blog, when asked about the PlayStation 4’s global sell-through rate, Sony Computer Entertainment America Marketing Vice President John Koller responded with “The response has been fantastic. In the US, PS4 was #1 in sales for next-gen consoles in January, nearly doubling the nearest next-gen competitor.”

In the months between the PlayStation 4 launch and the 2013 holiday season, Koller said that Sony has shipped over 4.2 million consoles worldwide, and “sold every PS4 available in the US”. He also said Sony  will “continue doing our best to provide additional inventory in all of the 53 countries where PS4 is available”, with supply refreshing regularly.

South Africa knows first-hand about the PlayStation 4’s popularity and resulting scarcity, but fortunately with last week’s arrival of more PS4s at retail, the drought is over for now.

Shacknews reports that every five or six years, NPD has to take a “leap week” into account where January unfolds over five weeks and not four, and 2014’s January is one such beast. That skews the figures somewhat so that NPD can keep their year-on-year figures aligned; on paper it seems like this January only saw a 17% increase in hardware sales, but by taking the leap week into account, sales were actually up 47% compared to last year.

Interestingly, wrote that the NPD report also showed that Call of Duty has been knocked from its perch as the gaming industry’s top-seller by Rockstar’s Grand Theft Auto V. This marks the first time since 2008 that Activision’s monster franchise hasn’t topped the sales charts, but then with GTA V racking up a billion dollars’ worth of sales in just three days, that was always going to be a tough ask.

So the next(current?)-gen war is definitely on. Microsoft has a long way to go to woo South African gamers away from the attraction that is the PlayStation 4, but clearly ours isn’t the only market where the Xbox-maker is facing some pretty serious challenges.

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Deon got his first taste of PC gaming at the tender age of 11 when his father bought an 8088 XT, ostensibly to "help him with his homework". Instead, it introduced him to Leisure Suit Larry, King Graham, Sonny Bonds and many more, and Deon has been a PC gamer and hardware enthusiast ever since. He landed his first professional writing gig in 2006 at a prestigious local PC magazine, a very happy happenstance as he got to write for a living about things he loves - tech, PCs, gaming, and everything in between. He's been writing about it all ever since, and loves every minute of it.