Why Xbox Failed In Japan

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  • Published: 08 October 2019
  • Microsoft's Xbox consoles have become a global hit. But there's one market where they don't work — Japan. Of the 46.9 million Xbox Ones sold worldwide through the second quarter of 2019, just 0.3% of them have been in Japan, according to IDC. Meanwhile, Japanese companies Sony and Nintendo are popular with consumers.

    When Microsoft announced it was developing a video game console, the industry was skeptical. In the ’90s, Microsoft was known for its software, not its hardware business.

    Almost two decades later, Microsoft’s Xbox has become a popular console, holding its own against Sony and Nintendo.

    But there’s one market where the Xbox hasn’t been a hit with consumers — Japan.

    When Microsoft released the Xbox in 2001 in the United States, Japan was the gaming juggernaut of the world. It was home to the three big console makers, Nintendo, Sega and Sony, and had the best developers.

    Microsoft faced three big challenges launching the Xbox in Japan. It had to convince Japanese developers to make games for Xbox, overcome consumers’ skepticism about the first edition’s bulky design, and make up for lost sales from launching after the holiday period.

    Today, Microsoft still struggles to sell consoles in Japan. Of the 46.9 million Xbox Ones sold worldwide through the second quarter of 2019, just 0.3% of them have been in Japan, according to the International Data Corporation.

    While Japan is a big market for video games, Dean Takahashi, the lead writer for GamesBeat at VentureBeat, said Microsoft doesn’t rely on Japanese consumers.

    “Japan is still down, but they don’t actually need it to make billions of dollars,” Takahashi said.

    In a statement to CNBC, Microsoft said Japan is an important part of its global gaming community.

    “We’re committed to bringing innovative and homegrown content from Japan’s leading game creators to a global audience,” said Phil Spencer, Microsoft’s executive vice president of gaming, in a statement.

    While Japanese consumers prefer Sony’s PlayStation or Nintendo’s Switch, Microsoft’s relationship with its Japanese competitors is changing. Watch this video to learn more about how Microsoft is working with Sony on the future of video gaming.

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    Why The Xbox Failed In Japan

Comments • 1 761

  • Seth Morrison
    Seth Morrison  3 minutes back

    Eh I have an xbox and a PC, dont see a need for a playstation

    • Xros Heart Federation
      Xros Heart Federation  4 minutes back

      Cuz Japanese Technology is better and the world would be a better place if we all have their technology. Same reason why Amtrak is a bullet train wannabe.

      • dodo killeurs
        dodo killeurs  8 minutes back

        no no stop is sh it média cnbc why Xbox failed ( Just SONY PS4 ) and asia player like PC japan no delike Microsoft japan using Windows

        • Tony Greene
          Tony Greene  33 minutes back

          Strange because they really want the F22 Raptor.

          • VoxCudaRadio
            VoxCudaRadio  1 hours back

            Xbox Original - Failed in Japan due to lack of marketing
            Xbox 360 - Failed in Japan due to RROD
            Xbox One - Failed in Japan due to Don Mattrick sticking the finger in everyones faces
            Xbox Scarlett - Might do better with Phil Spencer on board, but doubtful it will be an astounding success

            • Shadowhunterr
              Shadowhunterr  1 hours back

              Why xbox failed in Japan ?

              Americans: Because they have Sony and Nintendo.
              Europe and Japan: if you build a console towards the US audience why would we care ? We dont use tv,tv,tv setup boxes. That is so 2000.

              • bruce wayne
                bruce wayne  2 hours back

                Dean Takahashi? Isn't that the cuphead guy? 🤣🤣🤣😝

                • Tsar Marklovski
                  Tsar Marklovski  2 hours back

                  I think its because the Japanese didn't care about Halo. The only reason to own the original XBOX was Halo, Brute Force, and Fusion Frenzy.

                  • Tsar Marklovski
                    Tsar Marklovski  2 hours back

                    They accepted atom bombs pretty kindly tho.

                    • kiyonexus
                      kiyonexus  2 hours back

                      Look at cnbc using a hot cute ass Asian chick as clickbait

                      • Joserics
                        Joserics  2 hours back

                        Sony didn't gave the circuit thing for the controller... but now Sony had to make a deal with Microsoft because Sony doesn't know how to stream games properly... lol

                        • Alexander Arnold
                          Alexander Arnold  2 hours back

                          National Scientists that are trying to "Preserve their national security" are sometimes like Street Magicians that try to give gifts to those to further their nation's Survival, usually when Textbooks have been allowed to be sabotaged to the point that they teach Foreign Nation's the dominance of only one or more "parties"; and Japanese "Snowfox" Sushi and Kroger.

                          • Ronald Charan
                            Ronald Charan  2 hours back

                            Xbox failed everywhere period. End of story. Completely owned by playstation.

                            • Joserics
                              Joserics  2 hours back

                              This is kind of sh*tty, are japo ese the same towards western games... including indies?

                              • Captain Destruction93
                                Captain Destruction93  2 hours back

                                I feel Xbox will make gains in Japan if they can nail cloud gaming. I mean how many Japanese would turn down playing Xbox exclusives on there phone /tablets if it only cost them say $10 a month and didn’t require buying an Xbox console?

                                If Microsoft can create effortless mobile gaming without having to sell separate handhelds they will be set in Japan.

                                • KerimCan_ZBZ 98
                                  KerimCan_ZBZ 98  2 hours back

                                  It's like Xbox was being cucked

                                  Xbox: Please love me :'(
                                  Japan: No

                                  • b g
                                    b g  2 hours back

                                    Actually to say the truth only US and UK have more preferences on Xbox with other consoles while rest of the world mostly prefer on Playstation and Nintendo as next

                                    • Hardheaded Jarhead
                                      Hardheaded Jarhead  2 hours back

                                      US Air Force uses xbox controllers to fly drones over seas

                                      • milixe1
                                        milixe1  3 hours back

                                        Is Dean Takahashi the famous master of Cuphead?

                                        • kiyonexus
                                          kiyonexus  3 hours back

                                          Nobody cares about the hardware... It's all about the software and contents. That's why Sega's Dreamcast failed even though that system was years ahead for its time.

                                          • Miku Izayoi
                                            Miku Izayoi  3 hours back

                                            What's the point of selling Xbox to Japan when they have PS4

                                            • Z Rus
                                              Z Rus  3 hours back

                                              Sony declining that's why Sony agree to Join Development of xCloud

                                              In the end,
                                              every company want to be like Apple, Locking everyone into their ecosystem then turn them into a Sheep.

                                              Only Apple can sell aluminum stand for 1k

                                              Heck, I'm sure Apple can sell a Cucumber for 500 USD and still sell very well

                                              • Engin Atik
                                                Engin Atik  4 hours back

                                                Never owned any game consoles, I’ll go out on a limb: It was the green packaging.

                                                • Mazhar Mahathir
                                                  Mazhar Mahathir  4 hours back

                                                  I was all for the XBOX from the original XBOX days, but switched to Sony and the PS4 because of one thing... their services still don't cover where I'm from!! Microsoft XBOX services exclude smaller countries.. but PS4 doesn't! So why should I or anyone where I'm from get an XBOX, when Microsoft can't be bothered servicing smaller countries? All these years, every time I see videos of "why PS4 beat out the Xbox", NEVER ONCE does anyone bring up this glaring issue that Microsoft doesn't support A LOT of countries that Sony and the PS4 (PS Plus etc.) support. - writing from Malaysia..

                                                  • Ainz sv
                                                    Ainz sv  4 hours back

                                                    Move to mobile

                                                    • L.I. Schooner
                                                      L.I. Schooner  5 hours back

                                                      Just stop trying to sell in japan!

                                                      • inactive
                                                        inactive  5 hours back

                                                        Xbox failed everywhere in Asia, not just Japan. Go to any shopping mall in Asia and try to ask for any Xbox products. There is none and they probably don’t even know what it is.

                                                        • Josue Ochoa
                                                          Josue Ochoa  5 hours back

                                                          Japanese games are super weird... like many letters and sparkly effects going on with ANIME like graphics and also those spaceship shooting games kind of like mobile games.
                                                          Why don’t they like Realistic graphics?
                                                          Also why don’t they fix/cut their sideburn?

                                                          • SIMIFU
                                                            SIMIFU  5 hours back

                                                            TV TV TV SPORTS SPORTS SPORTS

                                                            • Koren
                                                              Koren  5 hours back

                                                              It’s not only in japan, lol PlayStation 4 is popular worldwide, the only countries that Xbox is known is where in U.S. and probably Canada (PS4 is more popular now today) Rest of the world like Asia, Europe, South America has Barely heard of Xbox One.

                                                              • mluu510
                                                                mluu510  5 hours back

                                                                Japan only support their own brand even when their product sucks. Just look at Sony phones vs Samsung phone in Japan

                                                                • Liberty Prime
                                                                  Liberty Prime  5 hours back

                                                                  Japan buys Made in Japan
                                                                  USA buys Made in China

                                                                  • flip1sba
                                                                    flip1sba  5 hours back

                                                                    The Japanese patronize their own.

                                                                    • Cruelwraith2 games
                                                                      Cruelwraith2 games  5 hours back

                                                                      If American people who like Japanese things are weebs what are Japanese people who like American things

                                                                      • Corona light
                                                                        Corona light  6 hours back

                                                                        Xbox is garbage

                                                                        • Henry Delgado
                                                                          Henry Delgado  6 hours back

                                                                          xbox is a Playstation wanabe, they have an inferior complex and plus Playstation has more exclusive games that are better

                                                                          • Allen Miranda
                                                                            Allen Miranda  6 hours back

                                                                            This is really late on this. Lol

                                                                            • Artistic Endeavors
                                                                              Artistic Endeavors  6 hours back

                                                                              X-Box failed because they reverse engineered their own BS version of it. Simple as that. They stopped taking garbage because they reverse engineered enough. If only the American people would wake up and turn in their "Blue" trash cans and see the truth. Why were these gutter snipes ever let into the real game? The entire earth knew better long before this democrap-clap trap occurred!!!

                                                                              • Lie Stefanus90
                                                                                Lie Stefanus90  6 hours back

                                                                                Japan cant even port their game to pc, just stick to peasants market pls

                                                                                • MARK ZUCKERBERG
                                                                                  MARK ZUCKERBERG  6 hours back

                                                                                  If they all bought a Xbox they could’ve never played MGS4 Guns Of The Patriots

                                                                                  • K̶ylo̾w̾
                                                                                    K̶ylo̾w̾  7 hours back

                                                                                    Because Asians have small hands.

                                                                                    • Ange Alexiel
                                                                                      Ange Alexiel  7 hours back

                                                                                      protectionism ^^

                                                                                      • MiRacLe Lee
                                                                                        MiRacLe Lee  7 hours back

                                                                                        Japan have Sony, end of story.

                                                                                        • Sigit Dragneel
                                                                                          Sigit Dragneel  7 hours back

                                                                                          I think not just Japan.... Every Asian countries I think... PS more domination

                                                                                          • MrKiLLBiLL Gaming
                                                                                            MrKiLLBiLL Gaming  7 hours back

                                                                                            Becuz its not SONY?? LMAO

                                                                                            • Chandler Gerald
                                                                                              Chandler Gerald  7 hours back

                                                                                              Who needs green when you have blue.

                                                                                              • Matt Allred
                                                                                                Matt Allred  7 hours back

                                                                                                Eh I play Xbox because I’m not interested in JRPGs, I play FPS, western rpgs, open world racing and shooting sure everyone loves Nintendo but with the prices of games nowadays I’d rather pick one console and at this point I’m attached to my gamerscore.

                                                                                                • sgtghost141
                                                                                                  sgtghost141  7 hours back

                                                                                                  Immediately exposed yourself when you call Xbox One launch successful.