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Japanese hardware sales continue decline

3DS sales down by a third, PSP by a half as Japanese market suffers

The 3DS remains the best-selling hardware format in Japan for the fourth week running, although the ongoing impact of the earthquake disaster may have made availably of all consoles increasingly unreliable.

3DS sales fell by a third from the previous week, to 61,394. As a result the format now appears to have almost no chance of fulfilling Nintendo's predictions of 1.5 million sales before the end of the March.

Although this might be seen as disappointing in the context of the console's recent launch it is unclear to what degree sales are being affected by the earthquake disaster - both logistically and otherwise.

The PSP is definitely reported to be supply-constrained, with sales nearly halving to just 23,511 units this week (including 600 for the PSPgo).

As a result the PlayStation 3 became the second best-selling console of the week, although its own sales also fell, from 32,406 the previous week to just 26,623.

Nintendo's other two formats saw small rises from the previous week, with the Nintendo DS family enjoying an increase of over 1000 units to 14,590 (DSi XL: 7,452, DSi: 6,513, DS Lite: 625).

Wii sales were static at 9724, as was the Xbox 360 on 1619. PlayStation 2 sales saw a small rise to 1638, beating Microsoft's home console for the first time in several weeks.