More charts! Some quarterly ones this time:
Overall, Q4 2018 was the best overall quarter for console hardware sales (excluding dedicated handhelds) since 2010, but this was buoyed by significant YoY growth in Switch sales. Overall, Q4 was down for combined PS4 & XBO sales. Still, this was the fourth consecutive year for same-gen conventional console sales being over 5M units during Q4, the longest such streak in the history of the U.S. market, and no doubt caused by the official temporary price cuts during the holidays causing Q4 to represent a significantly larger portion of yearly sales than in past generations.
2018 was also the largest year overall since 2011, again thanks to the success of the Switch. The PS4 & XBO still, despite YoY declines in Q4, still managed to have only a negligible decline in total combined yearly sales from 2017. With five consecutive years of over 9 million combined, again another unprecedented streak for same-gen sales of conventional consoles, this generation has exhibited remarkably flat sales. 2015 was still the peak, but not a very pronounced one, and the overall curve was not typical by historical standards. I think this is also largely due to the increased focus on holiday sales driven by temporary price cuts. Still, they cannot continue the streak forever, and they must inevitably reach a point where sales start to irreversibly decline. Based on evidence from the past year, there are indicators that suggest that the PS4 & XBO may be entering the post peak period of their life cycles. 2018 sales for those systems were buoyed by three major software titles (GoW and Spider-Man for the PS4, and RDR2 for both) providing significant YoY boosts for their months of release, and the X1X helping propel healthy YoY growth for the XBO for the first eight months of the year (sales for September, November, and December suggest the X1X boost is over, with September being flat and November & December being down).
I may post some more charts tomorrow. I have to go eat dinner now, and I have to get an early start in the morning.