The First Four Months: Nintendo Wii Sales Challenged by Xbox?
In a recent post, gaming news feeder Kotaku relayed the NPD's console sales numbers for the first four months of the Nintendo Wii and Sony PlayStation 3. Rather than simply include those two systems, however, Kotaku threw in their next-gen rival Xbox 360, along with the now-dated PlayStation 2, GameCube, and original Xbox. Although Nintendo fans are sure to be proud of their little white console, the big surprise may be Microsoft's big black Xbox, which finished second in its own first 120 day period.
We've been reporting for months – probably about four, by now – of the Wii's massive popularity and subsequent retail success. With the mainstream media wrapping its arms around the newborn Nintendo, the simple flick-the-wrist motion of most Wii games have translated into huge sales. In fact, Kotaku reports that, since it launched in November, the console has shipped out some 1,860,000 times. Mario would be proud.
Even more shocking is the success of the original Xbox, which was the only system to encroach upon Wii sales. The Xbox sold some 1,690,000 times in its first four months.
For the record, here are the remaining numbers:
PlayStation 2: 1,360,000
PlayStation 3: 1,060,000
So, what do the numbers mean?
Not all that much. Four months hardly determines the future of any console, and neither Nintendo nor its fans should get too far ahead of themselves. With the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3 packing the biggest software guns for the remainder of 2007, expect their hardware sales to catch the Wii.
But, what about that Xbox?
Affordability is certainly a factor, but I'd go so far as to speculate that the Xbox's success has something to do with its "hackability". That option alone has kept the PSP in the handheld race, and should prolong the life of the big black box for some time.
One final note: Think the Xbox hardware sales are impressive? According to a secondary chart from Kotaku, the console hammered the competition in software, at $8,179,000 over the course of its first four months.
For a more in-depth look at the next-gen forecast, check out GizmoCafe's Gaming Predictions, 2007.