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PlayStation 4 beats out Xbox One as the best-selling console

New data shows that Sony's console sales were nearly double those of Microsoft in January. Meanwhile, video games sales fell compared with the same time last year.

Sarah Tew/CNET

In the battle for the best-selling console, Sony's PlayStation 4 has come out on top -- beating Microsoft's Xbox One -- for the month of January.

Research firm The NPD Group released new data on Thursday showing that hardware sales were up 17 percent to $241 million in January compared to the same time last year. However, since January 2013 was five weeks and January 2014 was four weeks -- normalized sales of gaming hardware shows a 47 percent increase. And, PlayStation led these sales.

"PS4 led overall hardware sales this month, followed by the Xbox One," The NPD Group's Liam Callahan said in an e-mail.

While The NPD Group didn't go into specific numbers, Bloomberg reports that PlayStation 4 sales were nearly double those of Xbox One. This is a reverse from December when Xbox One sales reportedly were higher than PlayStation 4.

As far as sales of video games, the numbers are a bit bleaker. Total sales of physical games fell 21 percent from last year to $664 million, according to The NPD Group. However, if digital downloads, used games, social networking games, and rentals are included consumers spent roughly $1.05 billion in January. Additionally, normalizing the sales for 2013's five-week period, game sales appear to be down just 1 percent.

The top five best selling games for January were Call of Duty: Ghosts, NBA 2K14, Battlefield 4, Assassin's Creed IV: Black Flag, and Grand Theft Auto V, respectively.

Data released by The NPD Group earlier this week showed that the US video game market appeared to be stuck in a holding pattern in 2013. While there weren't any significant declines in consumer spending throughout the year, growth tallied up just 1 percent. However, that's better than years past, since it was the first time the market had experienced growth in the last two years.

Now playing: Watch this: Sony PS4 vs. Microsoft Xbox One