Representatives from Microsoft today announced that its Xbox Live Marketplace service, which features downloadable demos, trailers, and other virtual commodities for the the Xbox 360, has surpassed 50 million downloads, doubling the 25 million mark announced three months prior. The company also noted that users of the Xbox Live service have logged an impressive 2 billion hours online since the service was launched for the original Xbox in 2002.
In addition, Microsoft confirmed that the recently released Texas Hold ‘em
set a day one record as the fastest downloaded item ever on the Xbox Live Marketplace, with over 100 downloads per minute in the first 24 hours of the title’s release. The game was released for free to all Xbox Live members for the first 48 hours of its availability, before reverting to its normal price of of 800 Microsoft Points ($10).
The company also noted that 65 percent of Xbox 360 consoles that are connected to Xbox Live have downloaded titles from the popular Xbox Live Arcade service, and that there have been over 8 million Xbox Live Arcade games downloaded since the launch of the Xbox 360 console in November 2005. Interestingly, the information does not differentiate between downloads of free demos versus full versions, which generally must be paid for using pre-purchased Microsoft Points. However, the company did note that to date, over 2 billion such points have been purchased for the service.
Additionally, within the first week of the release of Electronic Arts' Madden NFL 07
, Microsoft reported that players unlocked more than 600,000 achievements and Xbox Live hosted more than 2 million hours of gameplay on the annual football game.
Finally, other notable statistics released by Microsoft include the fact that 60 percent of Xbox 360 owners have signed on to the Xbox Live online service, and that 1,300,000 text and voice messages are sent via Xbox Live daily. Currently totaling half a billion sent messages between the Xbox Live community per year, Microsoft expects this figure to increase dramatically following the launch of the Xbox Live Vision camera on September 19 in the U.S. and October 6 in Europe.