The next xbox will be coupled in harmony with Windows 10. I could see this affecting the name. Xbox is more about services than being focused on the console, so we'll see.
My prediction was 45 to 50 mil max by the end of gen. Ive been out of the loop on VG Chartz most of 2018, so my prediction was from 2017.
I think the Windows thing actually hurts the chances of the XB2 or XBW(indows.) I mean, if you can get all of their games on PC, why not upgrade your PC for about as much as the, probably, $499 Scarlet will cost? Granted it would probably be closer to the base XB2 in power, but it'll still play all of their games. I know there are some people, like myself, who just prefer console gaming. Still, if you only get a XB2, it seems a little pointless. A PS5+PC, like the PS4+PC of this gen, is just the way to go to get pretty much everything. Just need a Switch to get everything. I just don't see many people going XB2+PC or XB2+PC+Switch.
And it looks like your prediction is going to be close, maybe even spot on. I think it will finish just north of 50M, maybe 52M, but it stops there. This year doesn't look to be off to a good start, at least according to Amazon. It's only SKU on the Top 100 for the year is at #95, and is $229 with a 1TB HDD and Minecraft with some bundled DLC. That's $70 cheaper than the standalone PS4, which is at #49. Even the $170 more expensive Pro is sitting at #82.
Yeah, the move Microsoft is currently making puts the Xbox at odds of maximizing marketshare. Because of their relationship wth third party, they would definitely need to cross their fingers that sony trips over their own feet again like last gen so they can pick up the pieces. Chances are (with sony paying attention) this wont happen anytime soon. Also, you're right that PC gamers have less of a reason to own an Xbox now, so honestly, I hope they maximize their output to reach the two billion gamers they projected to reach earlier. Phil Spencer has lofty goals and has already stated on television that the console isnt the main priority. Sony beat them back into reality, which got them to invest in first party. Hopefully this means they will find a happy middle ground, on their road to innovate software distribution to their many future consumer bases. Gamepass will also be on PC, so they Xbox should be more competitive on PC next gen (in the midst of this storefront war on PC).
As for my prediction, I thought the Xbox would sell similarly to the 360, but the problem is the only reason the 360 reached 86-87 million is because it had eight years to do it before the consoles successor launched. The PS3 had seven years and the 360 had eight and it pretty much ended in a tie, while the Wii won and moved on.
I don't know about Xbox reaching 52 million, but perhaps that might occur, given the software is up to par and inspiring console sales. Microsoft's marketing has proven to be amazing,because they've been selling well despite having so few console selling games. Its pretty much like they took a page out of EA or Activision's playbook.
Lets see what happens because the switch is coming for the Xbox and thats another prediction I had for Q4. Perhaps the switch my pass the xbox sooner than that. Lets see.