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Greenberg: Wii consumers are "buying it as a novelty"

By Matt Martin

Mon 07 Jul 2008 7:42am GMT / 3:42am EDT / 12:42am PDT

Microsoft expects more casual consumers to "graduate" from Wii to Xbox 360

Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg has said that consumers are buying Nintendo's Wii as a "novelty" machine similar to home karaoke machines.

Speaking to Gamasutra, the outspoken director of product management for Micorsoft's gaming business said that he believes consumers aren't buying Nintendo's home console for games, and that those same consumers will eventually “graduate” to the Xbox 360.

“You see they're not buying games on it, right? They're buying it, it's like something they break out when people come over, and it's maybe a fun thing, but it's almost like the same people that buy a karaoke machine, you know?" said Greenberg of the consoles popularity with consumers new to gaming.

"They're not really buying it for games, they're just buying it as a novelty."

Greenberg believes that the Xbox 360 can appeal to mainstream consumers, not just the hardcore audience, and that the popularity of the Wii will push consumers looking for a new experience to Microsoft's home console over time.

"I think that there's a difference in the type of customer that is buying the Wii. When you think about it, there's a difference between trying to be the number one console with nine year old gamers, and being the console that offers the most experiences from 13 to 33," he said.

"In this generation we're seeing record revenues for the US and globally for the business, and we're seeing more people buying and playing games than ever before, and the Wii is definitely part of that. And as they grow that pie, that benefits us too, because those customers are eventually going to want to graduate to an Xbox 360 experience."

Sales of the Wii in North America were 675,100 units during May 2008, as it outsold its rivals for the fourth consecutive month. According to figures from NPD, the Xbox 360 sold 186,600 units in the same month.

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1 Comment

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.

2,510 3,183 1.3
I don't think I've ever seen as much damage control in one generation as we are experiencing now.

This isn't the first time a rep from MS has made this statement.*

Software reports from many retail tracking firms suggest they are selling software on Wii quite well meaning Greenberg essentially just lied.**

In stark contrast to his comments, we are now getting reports that the industry is not bringing in new gamers as much as perceived*** so his assertion that all these new gamers will migrate to X360 once they graduate gaming kindergarten on Wii is not only highly debatable but apparently not going to be the windfall of graduates they are hoping for.

And finally according to other reports, the average Wii owner is quite a good bit older than fact, add a 2 in front of it.****

* - [link url=

** - NPD, Chart Track, Famitsu, Media Create, GfK, Amazon, etc....

*** -

**** -

Posted:7 years ago


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