After what may well be looked upon as a troubled year by its own standards, Nintendo has emerged from 2009 buoyant thanks to news of record-breaking performances from the Wii and DS in North America.
In December alone Wii sold an astonishing 3.8m units – just 400k short of the PS3’s overall 2009 sales. It clinches the single-month US record in the process. The DS and DSi combined sold 3.3m in the month – which itself would have been a new monthly record were it not for the Wii’s dominant performance.
Overall for the year Wii shifted 9.6m machines and the DS 11.2m, the latter figure representing a new yearly US hardware sales record.
Aside from Nintendo, Sony’s PS3 enjoyed its biggest ever sales month in the region, selling 1.35m units. Xbox 360 was just a fraction behind with 1.3m unit sales throughout the month.
It was a strong year overall for PS3, too, with the high-tech machine finally beginning to deliver on Sony’s many promises. The PS3 sold 4.3m units in North America in 2009 – up on the 3.8m sold in 2008.
“There are a lot of hardware records this month,” NPD’s Anita Frazier clarified. “The PS3 realized it's biggest month of sales ever, and the first time sales have exceeded 1m units.
“The Wii and the DS also had their biggest sales months ever, and in fact the two platforms hold the top two spots in sales of any hardware device in a single month. Overall, it was the biggest month of sales for hardware on both a dollar and unit basis.
“This current generation of console hardware has outsold the last by more than 9m units during the first 50 months in the market.”
Here are those sales numbers once again:
DECEMBER (unit sales)
Wii – 3.8m
DS/DSi – 3.3m
PS3 – 1.35m
Xbox 360 – 1.3m
2009 TOTAL (unit sales)
DS/DSi – 11.2m
Xbox 360 – 10m+
Wii – 9.6m
PS3 – 4.3m