Market analyst Michael Pachter isn't afraid to broadcast a hot take. The man regularly makes headlines for his statements and predictions about certain consoles and certain games that, whether they come to fruition or not, tend to get people talking. In the latest episode of the Pachter Factor, he fields a question about Gamescom which leads to some interesting comments on the Xbox One X. Basically, he doesn't want you to fall for Microsoft's marketing spin about the "fastest selling Xbox pre-order ever." If you want to see what he has to say, you can track to the 2:40 mark in the video above.
"Xbox One X, it is ranked on Amazon in the pre-orders year-to-date, last I looked, number 66. The NES Classic was at number 23. It sold 2.3 million units lifetime, and you know that the bulk of those units were sold last year. So, this year, maybe a million? So if Xbox One X is ranked 40 slots below that, it's not even close to a million, and of course the Amazon allocation is literally probably five or ten thousand units."
So his basic opening argument is, hey, there weren't a lot of these puppies to go around in the first place, so of course they sold out quickly. Additionally, if you take a step back and look at the raw data, we're probably not looking at a huge shift in units. It's not like there are millions of Xbox One Xes going out the door.
His next argument is even more provocative, though.
Don't Fall for the BS
Pachter isn't finished, yet. Microsoft really must have rubbed him the wrong way by touting the X1X as the fastest selling Xbox, because he went out of his way to point out why that statement is basically meaningless:
"Don't fall for the BS," he says, "that tells you that this is the fastest pre-ordered console in Xbox history... They only have a couple! The Xbox didn't have big pre-orders; the Xbox 360 maybe, but honestly who was pre-ordering consoles back in '05? So of course this is the most pre-ordered because they're 'much more organized, and they're marketing to an install base of 30 million or 35 million Xbox Live Gold members, so of course they're heavily pre-ordered.
"I would not read much into that."
What he's really trying to say...
He's trying to point out that console pre-orders are a fairly new thing. Pre-order culture has never been as prominent as it is right now, and it certainly wasn't a big deal when the original Xbox launched. The Xbox 360 may have seen a little pre-sale traction, but people were much more willing to wait or brace a brick and mortar storefront to claim their consoles.
So technically, while it's true that this is the fastest selling Xbox pre-order in history, Microsoft Xbox pre-order history is extremely limited and humble in scope. Does that mean you shouldn't be excited about the console? Absolutely not. If you pre-ordered an Xbox One X, then you have every reason to be excited.
Rather, I think Pachter is cautioning those who are less-versed in marketing speak not to feel pressured into placing an order right away. These consoles are going to be around, so take your time.