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Microsoft resets finish line to 100 million after winning the 10 million unit dash

According to the latest NPD console sales numbers, Microsoft holds the lead in terms of total current-generation console sales in the U.S. with 10 million Xbox 360 sold. Microsoft touted this number as being particularly significant as it believes the first to this milestone wins the generation overall.

“This year will be the largest in the history of the video game industry, with Xbox 360 leading the charge in the U.S. and abroad,” said Don Mattrick, senior vice president of the Interactive Entertainment Business in the Entertainment and Devices Division at Microsoft. “History has shown us that the first company to reach 10 million in console sales wins the generation battle. We are uniquely positioned to set a new benchmark for the industry.”

More than 19 million Xbox 360 consoles have sold worldwide – a number already eclipsed by the Nintendo Wii on the global scale with 25 million total units sold. The Wii with 8.8 million in the U.S. is also rapidly gaining on Xbox 360 and is selling at a quicker pace, despite having launched a year after Microsoft’s console. The PlayStation 3 has sold 4.1 million in the U.S., with a total of more than 12 million worldwide.

One area that the Xbox 360 is the undisputed leader in is the online space, where there are currently more than 12 million Xbox Live subscribers.

“Perhaps more important is the Xbox 360 worldwide online base – 12 million Xbox Live gamers is the largest community in the connected console games sector, which represents the greatest growth opportunity in the console market and where Microsoft has been the leader for two generations,” commented Billy Pidgeon, research manager at IDC.

With the 10 million mark under its belt, Microsoft appears to now be resetting the finish line at 100 million. Microsoft Games Studios corporate VP Shane Kim said in a Wired|Game|Life interview that the console war will finally be decided “When somebody's well on their way to reaching 100 million units.”

Microsoft may have a problem reaching the 100 million mark ahead of its competitors if the Japanese market isn’t buying the Xbox 360, where the console has yet to sell 1 million units. “Well, we've always known that we weren't going to win in Japan, right?,” Kim replied. “And I think we can build a very good business, an exciting business with a pretty big installed base with success in places like North America and Europe. Even though you may not think it's big numbers, we're actually strong in Latin America as well. Canada's been a big market for us as well. So there are ways to get the scale.”

“Now, if you don't get 10 million units in Japan, can you get to 100 million units overall? I'd love to get 90 million units and have that problem. That's what we're really trying to focus on,” Kim added. “I think it's way too early to declare a winner.”

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RE: Yeah right
By Alexstarfire on 5/24/2008 9:06:39 AM , Rating: 2
Sure, 2x might equal 7x in sequential reading, but when it comes to seek times.... it can hurt.

RE: Yeah right
By zensonic on 5/24/2008 10:35:02 AM , Rating: 2
But when you make stuff on a pressed media, you can optimize 90% af all seeks away. And if that is not enough you could, once, during installtion, use the built in harddrive of the PS3. So it really is a non-issue how big seek time the blueray drive has wrt. the PS3 and gameplay. Or atleast should be. Bad programmers exists everywhere...

RE: Yeah right
By Alexstarfire on 5/26/2008 9:59:13 AM , Rating: 2
I feel that's just retarded though. Sure, you might think it's great to have an HDD in your console, but I don't. My console should not become my second PC. I say if it can't play off the disc then it's not a true console, in my eyes at least. I mean, if you get to the point where your "console" installs a game onto an HDD then you've really made nothing but a single tasked PC with set hardware. Honestly, you think it'd be all that difficult to convert games to automatically install, if it's not already, and subsequently play on your computer. Granted that may have to be built into the setup on the game disc, but it'd still be a cake walk.

“And I don't know why [Apple is] acting like it’s superior. I don't even get it. What are they trying to say?” -- Bill Gates on the Mac ads

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