Although Microsoft remains under investigation for alleged antitrust violations in China - after authorities raided its offices, twice - the company is still pressing ahead with the launch of its Xbox One there next month. It will go on sale in China on September 23 and Microsoft is no doubt hoping that its console will make a big impact on this fresh market.
PCWorld reports that China has approved sales of 5 million Xbox Ones, as Microsoft's regional partner for the production and distribution of the console, BesTV, disclosed in its most recent earnings statement this week. BesTV also referred to industry projections suggesting that the Chinese market - which has, until recently, been under a government-imposed ban on the sale of foreign game consoles for the last thirteen years - has the potential to grow to 50 million units over the next five years.
If Microsoft can sell its full approved allocation of 5 million units in China, it may go some way towards helping it catch up with its main rival, Sony's PlayStation 4. The PS4 has consistently outsold the Xbox One since launch and Sony announced recently that a staggering ten million of its next-gen consoles have been purchased since November.
However, Microsoft won't have China to itself - the PS4 will also be sold there in partnership with another Chinese company which, curiously, is owned by the same conglomerate, Shanghai Media Group, that owns BesTV.