Updated: Jan 18
Microsoft has recently announced it has stopped manufacturing Xbox One consoles, marking the end of an era for gamers worldwide.
In a statement to The Verge, Xbox console product marketing senior director, Cindy Walker, said that Microsoft had already stopped production of Xbox One consoles since the end of 2020. She added that the company wanted "to focus on production of Xbox Series X / S consoles", hence the discontinuation.
Phil Spencer, Microsoft's Executive Vice President of Gaming and Head of Xbox, said that the Xbox Series X and S have been selling faster than any previous Xbox generation. He also mentioned that the Xbox Series X has a higher demand than the Xbox Series S, which is priced at US$299 and is in stock at U.S. retailers like Amazon and GameStop. However, despite the Series X being more sought after, Phil Spencer believes that the Series S's lower price point would be more appealing to customers.
"We can actually build more of the Series S [chips] in the same [chip] die space as we can the Series X," Spencer said. "That's a key reason for why we're seeing steady Xbox Series S stock, alongside Microsoft's decision to quietly discontinue the Xbox One S in favour of its next-gen consoles."
As of the publication of this article, a quick look at Xbox's Singapore page reveals that it no longer has the Xbox One listed among its list of purchasable consoles.
Microsoft's announcement came after Sony was reported to continue producing PlayStation 4 (PS4) consoles due to the supply chain of its current-gen console, the PlayStation 5, still experiencing shortages. According to unnamed sources, Sony was supposed to quietly discontinue the PS4's production at the end of 2021 but continued either way due to the last-gen console being more cost-efficient and its use of less-advanced chips.
As such, Sony will continue to produce about a million PS4 consoles throughout 2022 to reduce the strain from the production and shipping of PS5 units as well as maintain its relationship with production partners.
The shortage and discontinuation of video game consoles are one of the effects of the ongoing semiconductor shortage that started at the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic due to the sudden increase in demand for devices that would enable people to work or study from home. However, other factors contributed to the shortage over time, such as the US-China trade war and technological advancements that increased demand. According to Intel CEO Pat Gelsinger, the semiconductor shortage will continue until at least 2023.
Desktops, however, are not as affected by the chip shortage due to them not needing display-panel integrated circuits and power-management integrated circuits commonly found in laptops.