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Microsoft "ran out" of consoles over Christmas

Company predicts tight inventory for January and February

Microsoft claims it sold out of Xbox 360 consoles during December and predicts shortages for January and February.

Ahead of tonight's NPD sales data for the US in December, Microsoft's Larry Hryb said that the shortages meant he didn't expect the company to "win" against Sony and Nintendo during the Christmas month.

"NPD tomorrow. I found out we ran out of consoles at end of the month so don't expect to win Dec," he said via Twitter.

"Jan/Feb supply is tight as well. Likely amazing YOY growth numbers for Xbox."

Analyst firm Wedbush Morgan has predicted Microsoft sold 2.5 million Xbox 360 units during December, up 92 per cent year-on-year, with rivals Nintendo shifting 2.6 million Wii's and Sony 1.2 million PlayStation 3 units.

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Latest comments (9)

Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
They may not have "won" December, but if those figures are accurate, getting that close to Wii in December (a month where Wii has dominated since release) is an impressive feat.
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Terence Gage Freelance writer 5 years ago
Just an observation largely unrelated to this article; it's amazing that some people claim that Wii sales are dying, when even Microsoft couldn't catch them up with a much-hyped new piece of hardware and a $500 million marketing budget.
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Andrew Goodchild Studying development, Train2Game5 years ago
The problem is Wii sales are even more heavily weighted to December than everything else. The rest of the year has been slower (admittedly because virtually everyone has one by now). Also, Kinect's sales were a lot higher, obviously a lot were sold to existing Xbox owners.
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Show all comments (9)
Kevin Clark-Patterson Lecturer in Games Development, Lancaster and Morecambe College5 years ago
Erm...zavvi on ebay has more than 10 available and have sold 542 (as of yesterday)! ;)
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Aleksi Ranta Product Manager - Hardware 5 years ago
Terence: nintendo is battling itself/investors with numbers sold, not sony or Microsoft. Wii sales worldwide are peaking or peaked already. Its not good business in the investors minds.
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John Donnelly Quality Assurance 5 years ago
Kevin,

This would be Microsoft stock of the console not the retailers stocks.
The retail channels did not run out of consoles but there was no more that could be suplied to retailers who needed more hardware except from pulling inventory from their own stores to cover.

I walked in to Game after Christmas and picked up a new 360 with ease.
So at the retail level there is no shortages but there could be in some areas while the new hardware is shipped to the distributors and in to the retailers channels.
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Haven Tso Web-based Game Reviewer 5 years ago
The funny thing is if Wii is slowing down sales, it is still outselling other consoles, that's something to say about the Wii. As some of you said, a lot of people probably already have a Wii now. I have some non-gaming friends that also got a Wii over the holidays simply because of Wii Fit Plus, and that's how Nintendo manage to sell their consoles. Both of them never have had a console before in their lives.

The whole winning concept here and "shortage" announcement is more for publicity and stock values instead of concrete numbers sold imo.
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Tom Keresztes Programmer 5 years ago
@Terence,

The problem was never first party sales - not many (if any) 3rd party games were sold in significant numbers compared to 1st party Nintendo titles.
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Jack Palmer5 years ago
I expect this may be a shift from casual gamers away from the wii. Kinect is quite obviously trying to capture the same market as the wii, but the wii has been around for a number of years now; the wii may be what everyone has, but the 360 seems like the latest thing. My non-gaming friend didn't even realise that the 360 was running on 5 year old hardware.
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