SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - Sony Corp sold over 525,000 PlayStation3 consoles in the United States during the week of Black Friday that kicks off the holiday shopping season, surpassing sales of Nintendo’s new Wii U.
Sony Computer Entertainment Inc said on Thursday that sales of its six-year-old PlayStation3 jumped 9 percent over the same period last year. The sales compared with over 400,000 units sold of Nintendo’s Wii U, the new console on which the Japanese company is staking much of its future.
Microsoft Corp sold over 750,000 units of its Xbox 360 console during the week of Black Friday, one of the heaviest U.S. consumer-spending periods of the year.
The results could deal a blow to Nintendo, which is hoping that the Wii U, which comes with a touchscreen “GamePad” controller, will revive growth and pull it out of the red in coming years. Since its November 18 U.S. launch, the Wii U has been marred by technical glitches, including long software download times.
Analysts have said the initial sales numbers may have been curbed by insufficient supply, common during the launch of new products.
On Monday, Nintendo said Wii U consoles were “effectively sold out” in U.S. retail stores.
Sales of consoles and portable handheld game devices like the Nintendo 3DS are crumbling as gamers migrate to offerings on smartphones and tablets. According to research firm NPD Group, video game hardware sales slid 37 percent in October from a year ago.
The battle between the three game makers is expected to intensify when Sony and Microsoft launch their own next-generation PlayStation and Xbox consoles, expected in 2013.
Reporting By Malathi Nayak; Editing by Leslie Adler