During an interview at the Gstar international game expo in Seoul, Microsoft Korea spoke with Gamasutra about relative next-gen marketshare in the local sphere.
When pressed about the Xbox 360's total units sold in South Korea, Dae Hwan Lim, marketing coordinator for Microsoft Korea's entertainment & device division (which includes the Xbox 360), conceded that "I can't say myself, but some reports here said about 100,000."
"It should be possible to pass Japan with the number of hardware sold," he added, but wasn't keen to elaborate, saying "I can't predict when."
Lim was coaxed into a discussion of relative next-gen marketshare, however, when presented with the fact that the PlayStation business entered the market much stronger and earlier than Microsoft did. (The South Korean market, like many non-Japanese Asian markets, is still dominated by online PC games, rather than game consoles.)
"At the time, people were aware of video games," he says, "but the userbase wasn't really established. But after the PlayStation, they could see the possibilities of the market. So Microsoft saw that there were some prospects, and decided to come."
"So with the launch of the Xbox, we had a direct competitive relationship with the PS2," admitted Lim. "But with the launch of the Xbox 360 in 2006, we stepped forward."
Squeezed for further details, the marketer remarked that the "Xbox 360 is doing much, much better (than the PS3). There's a huge gap in market sales. I can't mention other company's numbers directly, but it's multiples larger."