When Xbox 360 was released, the unthinkable happened and Microsoft established a firm grip on the market and had the highest total sales for almost the entire generation (PlayStation 3 passed it, but not until PlayStation 4 and Xbox One had already been released). Xbox One hasn't been as fortunate, and PlayStation 4 has easily bested it with more than twice the sales.
In January this year, Niko Partners analyst and known insider Daniel Ahmad revealed that the global installed base of Xbox One was at 41 million sold units. That is lower than Xbox 360, which had sold 55 million after six years on the market, but despite this - it actually generates higher revenue, and by quite the margin as well.
It was once again Daniel Ahmad who tweeted the annual revenue of Xbox since fiscal year 2008, where you clearly can see the improvement in revenue. This is because of higher sales of games, but also services like Xbox Game Pass. He wrote the following and shared the picture at the bottom of this page:
"Despite Xbox One console sales being lower than those of Xbox 360, when aligned, Xbox revenue has grown notably this generation due to increased software and services revenue. Next year is expected to see a decline due to transition."
2020 marks the release of Xbox Scarlett and while revenue is due to drop (after all, when people upgrade they will be spending their money on hardware, not software) this data shows why companies are so eager to launch subscription services, and why we shouldn't expect them to go away anytime soon.