Posted on April 18, 2008,

Microsoft’s Spin on the March NPDs: We’re Leading the Industry


It’s amazing how what I would classify as a sub-par month can be twisted around with numbers to make it seem much better than it actually was. Yes, Xbox 360 did just manage to outsell the PS3, but only by a mere few thousand units, while both systems watched the Wii absolutely obliterate the competition. But, Microsoft is happy to be back in the number two spot, as their press release states.

You can tell it wasn’t a great month when the first few paragraphs of the press release dwell upon life-to-date numbers, hardware shortages, and forward looking statements.

Microsoft is really banking on the 360 being the winner in the GTA IV console war, so the figures for April and May are going to be extremely telling.

Hit the break for the full press release.

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 Xbox 360 continues to lead the industry

Consumers continue to make the ultimate vote for Xbox 360 as the console of choice by investing $9.4 billion to date this lifecycle in the Xbox 360 experience, far outpacing that of other game consoles. (March NPD data)

Going into March, some key U.S. retailers were still experiencing the trickledown effect of Xbox 360 console shortages. By the end of March, supply issues had improved and we expect retailers to be fully stocked with Xbox 360 consoles in time for the “Grand Theft Auto IV” launch. According to NPD, 262,000 Xbox 360 consoles sold in March, reclaiming the #2 position in the next-gen console category.

In just two weeks, Xbox 360 will extend its industry lead with the year’s most anticipated game launch, GTA IV. Launching April 29, GTA IV will be coming to Xbox 360 on day one. GTA IV will feature the first ever online multiplayer for the franchise and Xbox 360 is also the only place you can earn GTA IV Achievements and increase your gamerscore.

Starting this fall, only Xbox 360 owners will have access to exclusive GTA IV episodic content. Whether it’s the results of online polls or data from pre-sells, consumers have made it clear that the benefits of Xbox LIVE and exclusive access to GTA IV episodic content are making Xbox 360 the chosen place to play GTA IV.

Xbox 360 drives industry growth with record attach rates

  • March NPD data shows a new U.S. Xbox 360 software attach rate of 7.5, a record for any game console.
  • In Europe, Xbox 360 continues to enjoy the highest software attach rate of any game console with more than 7.0 games sold per console (PS3: 3.8; Wii: 3.5) after 27 months on the market..
  • Xbox 360 sales in Europe have more than doubled in the wake of recent retail price changes, solidifying its leadership position as the number one next-generation console in EMEA, owning 42 percent of the market in terms of life-to-date revenue.  (Microsoft estimates based on ChartTrack and Gfk data).
  • Third party publishers find more success on Xbox 360. In March, Xbox 360 accounted for $220 million of all third party game sales this generation, or 49 percent of share. Third party publishers win on Xbox 360 more than any other platform. (March NPD data)
  • Games for the Xbox 360 platform accounted for four of the top ten games for this generation. (March NPD data)

Xbox 360 most widely used system for online gaming

  • Xbox 360 delivers social entertainment experiences to more than 10 million Xbox LIVE gamers around the globe. (Microsoft internal data)
  • On April 2, NPD released a study called “Online Gaming 2008″ which reported that 42 percent of people ages six to 44 play video games online. Their console of choice? Xbox 360. Half of online gamers prefer the Xbox 360 over other current-generation gaming consoles. (“Online Gaming 2008″)
  • Xbox LIVE now delivers 4,800 hours of TV and movie entertainment including family favorites like “Hannah Montana,” “Lost,” and “Superman III.”(Microsoft internal data)

Xbox 360 is the gaming platform of choiceour great games and exploding online community will help keep it that way.

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