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PS3 in 3rd in December

15 Jan, 2009 By: Stephanie Prange

Sony Corp.’s PlayStation 3, which includes a Blu-ray Disc player, came in third in the next-generation console sales sweepstakes in December. The system sold about half as much (728,000 units) as Microsoft Corp.’s lower priced Xbox 360 (1.44 million units), according to U.S. data from The NPD Group.

The popular, low-priced Wii sold 2.15 million units in December, while the Nintendo DS sold even more units (3.04 million) for the month.

"The NDS captures the top-spot for hardware sales this month, marking the first time that any hardware system has sold in excess of 3 million units in any single month,” said NPD analyst Anita Frazier.

The PS3 is getting strong competition from its predecessor PS2, which despite its last-generation status, sold 410,000 units in December.

"The record for single-month console system sales still belongs to the PS2, which sold 2.7 million units in December 2002,” Frazier said.

Despite the poor economy, the game industry is growing.

"While industry growth has not continued at the blistering pace we saw during the second and third quarters, December's 9% increase over last December brings the year in 19% ahead of last year, and sets a new record for total industry sales," Frazier said. "Thirty-eight months into this generation of hardware, the three new systems have sold a combined 38.2 million units, whereas at the same point last generation, in December 2003, the three systems had sold 36.9 million units.”

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