Tue, Sep 12, 2006 - Page 12 News List

Xbox sales exceed targets, Microsoft Taiwan says

By Jason Tan  /  STAFF REPORTER

Sales of Xbox 360 video game consoles have surpassed the company's initial target by 20 percent four months after its launch on March 16, Microsoft Taiwan Corp said yesterday.

"We saw rising sales of Xbox 360 and game titles here. Sales [of the game console] exceeded our target by 20 percent after the launch," Alexander Huang (黃存義), the company's director for the Greater China area, told reporters.

He expects shipment growth will continue its strong momentum through fiscal year 2007, ending June next year, but declined to give detailed figures.

Unfazed by the upcoming launch of rival Sony Corp's Play-Station 3 (PS3), Huang said Xbox 360 already enjoys a head start.

Globally, the company has already sold 5 million game consoles as of the end of June. It expects to sell a total of 10 million units before PS3 hits the shelves in November.

To further entice game enthusiasts, Microsoft Taiwan is set to release this fiscal year another 25 new console accessories -- such as remote controls, charger kits, hard drives and decorative casings -- and 100 more game titles to add to the current 60 titles, according to Grace Chou (周文英), the director of the company's entertainment and device division.

Last Wednesday, Sony announced another delay in PS3's launch in Europe, Russia, the Middle East, Africa and Australasia, due to a shortage of laser parts.

But PS3's debut in Japan and North America in November will go ahead as planned, and Sony is still targeting shipments of 6 million units globally for fiscal year 2007.

Microsoft Taiwan yesterday also announced plans to invest up to NT$7 million (US$213,220) to set up a branch office in Taichung in late November.

The move follows the establishment of a Kaohsiung office in 2004, which it said successfully increased "customer satisfaction in the southern Taiwan area."

The new Taichung office will recruit around 10 staff to offer domestic support and promote business in the central region, said Davis Tsai (蔡恩全), Microsoft Taiwan's chief operating officer.

The company said last month that it expected double-digit growth in revenues in the Greater China market this fiscal year, bolstered by the rollout of new solutions including Windows Vista and increased partnerships with domestic personal computer manufacturers.

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