Manufacturers producing chips for the Nintendo Wii have reported an increase in orders which could suggest that the console is on track to launch with a headstart over the PlayStation 3.
According to a report by the Commercial Times, partially translated by Digitimes.com, ATI has seen the contribution from its consumer electronics business rising by 5 per cent over the course of the year to reach the 20 per cent mark. ATI supplies the graphics chip for the Wii.
The remote sensor for the Wii's unique controller is produced by PixArt Imaging, which is also reporting a rise in orders; the company has said that shipments of the chip may reach a million units in August.
This would support suggestions that the Wii will launch with a reasonable lead over the PS3, which will hit Japan on November 17th and the US and Europe a week later. Nintendo has yet to give a release date for the Wii, but has confirmed that an announcement will be made in September. It seems highly likely that the release date and price point will be revealed at the Tokyo Games Show, which will take place from September 22nd- 24th.
In addition, the Commercial Times reports that Silicon Integrated Systems, which manufactures chips for the Xbox 360, has also experienced an upsurge in orders recently - poviding further corroboration of speculaiton that Microsoft is ramping up its production schedule for the console in order to meet market demand this Christmas.