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Xbox 360 Reaches 30 Million Units Globally, 20 Million Active XBL Users
Xbox 360 Reaches 30 Million Units Globally, 20 Million Active XBL Users
May 28, 2009 | By Leigh Alexander

May 28, 2009 | By Leigh Alexander
More: Console/PC

Sales of Xbox 360 have topped over 30 million units worldwide, says Microsoft, citing NPD data to trumpet the highest percentage growth of any console thus far in 2009.

Microsoft says 2008 was its "biggest year in history," but its growth so far in 2009 is up 28 percent over that. Thanks to a 136 percent user boost driven by the New Xbox Experience Microsoft unveiled in November 2008, it's also reached 20 million active Xbox Live users, who've downloaded more than 1 billion pieces of content from the service.

"We’ve always been confident that Xbox 360 offers more entertainment value than any other console on the market, and these latest numbers show that consumers agree," says Interactive Entertainment Business senior VP Don Mattrick.

Microsoft says that in the current console generation, U.S. consumers have spent $14.5 billion on Xbox 360 as a "category". As it frequently does, the company highlights its strength among third-party publishers, claiming $5.9 billion in sales to date for them -- "more than those of current-generation consoles combined," Microsoft boasts, adding that Xbox 360's ratio currently stands at 8.3.

"We expect our growth to continue to accelerate," says Mattrick. "Our news at E3 next week will underscore our commitment to bringing blockbuster entertainment experiences to everyone and to growing the Xbox entertainment brand globally."

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Amir Sharar
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True, Sony's software output has hit high gear and has an incredibly enticing lineup for the next couple of years. This E3 will be interesting to see how MS counters in that regard.

I think at the present that the 360 does represent itself as the go-to console for gaming. The high tie-ratio isn't too surprising for me, as most 3rd party games end up better on the 360. Another big success for MS is the way MS was able to re-invent the console through NXE. To improve the sales of downloadable content that drastically is a great achievement (though some of that has to do with how user-unfriendly the last Marketplace was).

Despite all of this, in my opinion sales of the hardware could be better, and I personally feel that the 360's hardware issues, an issue that MS has done a poor job of handling (people sending in their consoles multiple times for repair, slow turn-around for getting new fixed hardware out there, lack of recognition of the problem for years despite it being apparent at launch) are issues that have come to haunt MS. For better or worse, the perception still exists among many that the hardware is reliable. Even for myself (I have a few 360s, of various builds), I can't say with confidence that any of them will last.

The PS2 hit over 60 million consoles in the same timespan. It's an unfair comparison to some degree; the PS2 didn't face something like the Wii, either. But with the staggering costs of next-gen game development, it's easy to wish for similar numbers for the 360.

My point being is that MS can boast these numbers to the public, but if I were them, I would not be happy with them.

Rayco Santana
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Microsoft never reveals games until its near the date of the release, you should know that already...

Vicente Cartas Espinel
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Mass Effect 2 looks like a very nice game that is coming for the 360...

Victor Boone
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"My point being is that MS can boast these numbers to the public, but if I were them, I would not be happy with them." With their attach rate, are you kidding me? Then Sony must be near suicide. But to be fair I have the advantage of hindsight with E3 day one announcements by Microsoft in the history books. Microsoft has just created a hell of a lot of buzz, with Natal, that's sure to bring dividends this holiday season. I still would be wary of early offerings because I do expect some shovelware (ala Wii) but overall I can't wait to get my hands one and give it a go. This could be the nail in the coffin for Sony, this Gen, if Natal even partially lives up to the hype. If Microsoft's not happy, their crying all the way to the bank, while Sony's gaming division is walking on rice paper right now trying not to piss off stockholders anymore then they already are.