Thursday, December 2, 2010

2.5 Million Kinects Sell in the First 25 Days

xbox kinect
In the beginning, I can definitely say that I had my doubts about the new motion-based controllers that Microsoft and Sony were releasing for their game systems, but it is now obvious that I was completely wrong about these products. I thought that anyone that was interested in motion-based gameplay would have already purchased Nintendo’s Wii. I also believed that the Xbox 360 and PS3 attracted a crowd that wouldn’t really care about motion-based gameplay, but these assumptions were definitely off-track.

Xbox Kinect is in direct competition with Nintendo’s Wii and Sony’s recently released Playstation Move. Although on Tuesday, November 30th Sony announced that they had shipped out 4.1 million Playstation Moves worldwide in the first two months of the Move’s release. Unfortunately for Sony, Microsoft announced on Monday, November 29th that 2.5 million Kinects were sold…in the first 25 days of its release.

"We are thrilled about the consumer response to Kinect and are working hard with our retail and manufacturing partners to expedite production and shipments of Kinect to restock shelves as fast as possible to keep up with demand," President of the Interactive Entertainment Business at Microsoft Don Mattrick said in a statement. "With sales already exceeding two and a half million units in just 25 days, we are on pace to reach our forecast of 5 million units sold to consumers this holiday."

The Kinect and the Move both feature electronic motion sensing technology, but with the Move you need a wand-like controller to be able to direct the game. With the Kinect, as the commercial says about one of the dance games for the Xbox 360, you can “shake everything…except a controller.”

Microsoft reported that it was recording its Kinect sales figures by looking at the sales through consumers, while Sony said that its sales figures represented the number of Moves sold to retailers. They also said that they counted a Move controller as a sale if it was either by itself or if it was sold as a part of the two different Playstation Move bundle packages that the company shipped.

According to analyst Michael Pachter, Microsoft has sold 325,000 Xbox 360s and Sony has sold 250,000 Playstation 3s in October. It is unclear so far as to whether or not these numbers have been influenced by the release of the motion-based controllers.

Microsoft said that Black Friday really helped to kick off the holiday sales of Xbox Kinect. Vice president of merchandising at Target Nik Nayar said that the Kinect was a “top performer” at Target stores during the Black Friday weekend. "We expect Kinect will be a must-have gift this holiday season, so Target will continue to receive consistent shipments of Kinect throughout December," he said.

Although I definitely had my doubts about the Xbox Kinect, I have been proved wrong. Microsoft has a hit on its hands with its controller-free Kinect system. Selling 2.5 million Kinects within the first twenty-five days is quite an accomplishment and not exactly what I expected. I feel that Microsoft’s Kinect will definitely do better than the Move. I believe this because of the new technology that Microsoft has to offer. The ability to be able to control a game without needing any sort of a controller is extremely alluring. Microsoft is sure to do well with this product, and I’m sure that the holiday season will only cause Microsoft’s Kinect sales figures to spike even higher.

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