back to article PS3 back to haunt Wii in Japan

New titles from Capcom and Sega helped Sony's Playstation 3 outsell the Nintendo Wii in Japan for the first time in 16 months, according Japanese magazine publisher Enterbrain. Enterbrain, which publishes the gaming weekly Famitsu, said today that 146,948 PS3s were sold in March, compared to 99,335 Wiis and 43,172 Xbox 360s. …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    "unlikely to topple the Wii's global dominance"

    Stating the blatantly obvious aren't they? The PS3 isn't going to catch up to the 360 let alone the Wii's install base. No amount of price cuts are going to start shifting PS3s in significant enough numbers to make any difference to this generation. If the 360 and Wii were taken off the shelves tomorrow it would still take the PS3 about 2 years to catch up to the 360. Sony are going to have to re-think their strategy for the next generation, assuming they even make another console after their losses this gen.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Sony are pursuing a completely different strategy to M$ on this one - it's obvious the PS3's lifecycle is longer than the XBox 360 and is heavily tied in with Blu Ray. The console is a loss leader for the games and, especially the movies. I'm beginning to see that you can't compare any of the consoles in this current generation with each other, because they're all aiming at different targets.

    Having said that, the losers this time around will be MS, who now have a supermassive black hole sized money pit where the XBox department resides, and once you throw in the fact that a fairly big minority of sales are repairs / refunds / replacements of broken machines, their 'lead' over the PS3 doesn't look so impressive after all...

  3. Matt Taylor

    @ AC 18:30

    Actually, the PlayStation division at sony is one of the only divisions that made sony any money last year. 360's are sold at a loss. Both make money up on games and extra hardware.

    Wii and 360 will have to sell millions more to get in more homes than sony. PS2 is still in more homes than anything else, and games are still coming out for it today.

    Since when can Microsoft make good hardware and since when has nintendo had a good game that does not involve a plumber?

  4. Henry Wertz Gold badge

    Ease of development

    "Etsuko Tamura said the console is unlikely to topple the Wii's global dominance because most developers have focused development on the Wii due to its established user base"

    Also, Wii is less expensive to develop for. 1) Easier to program for (although, if you're using OpenGL or some high level library I guess there's no difference.) 2) Due to more limited hardware on Wii, there's not the expectation that each game has super-high-def textures and polygon count, keeping costs down.

  5. James Pickett

    Profit or loss?

    Are PS3's still sold at a loss?

  6. Kevin

    Wow statistics...

    the most imaginary numbers on the planet

    instead of reading it as 1 game increasing PS3 sales and Wii's going down due to ONE game people could also read it as I dunno maybe the Wii is hitting market saturation in japan and no one needs a 2nd-4th for their house where as no where near as many people own a PS3 and are buying the 1st and only one.

  7. Swanny

    PS3 fanboi alert!

    At the end of the day PS3 is doing pretty well despite to poor price point, 360 is selling well cos it's cheap but how long are poeple going to shell out for an inferior product especially later in the consoles life when they already have a couple of door stops? No doubt PS3 will have a long lifetime like PS2 but good lunch finding a working 360 to play your "old" games in 5 years time after MS dump the 360 like the original xbox.

    Twas a sly move by sony to remove backwards compatibility for PS2 from PS3 to keep the old box shipping but I have no doubt PS2 emulation will appear in PS3 firmware update in it's lifetime once PS2 production stops.

    Wii does very well is cheap, great for casual play and has pirate following, 360 does well and is an absolute haven for pirates and freetards with hacked firmware. PS3 doesn't do quiet as well as 360 but NO pirated content detracting freetards and pirates and is by far the most who is really coming second?

  8. A

    any fanboy alert

    Can we stop the fanboy comments !

    first of all comparing ps3 to wii, is like comparing porsche GT sales to ford focus, completely pointless, different products

    as for this piece of statistic ... I really feel I have learned something interesting, yet full of surprises, with a hint of mystery about it ...NOT ! come on reg ! and that last line "boos can we wake the fanboys up pls ? they haven't argued in a while".

    you blog polyfillers !

  9. EvilGav


    PS3 - 21.3M @ 31/12/2008

    X360 - 27.93M @ 14/1/2009

    Wii - 50M @ 25/3/2009

    In Europe the PS3 and 360 are about equal on sales, in the US the 360 dominates massively and in Japan the PS3 dominates.

    The fact is, the Wii has won this round of console sales, by a vast margin, both of the others are also rans with only an outside chance of reaching the dizzying sales of the Wii in their life-time.

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    "Since when can Microsoft make good hardware and since when has nintendo had a good game that does not involve a plumber?"

    Zelda, f zero, trauma center, madworld, tales of series, battilion wars, viewtiful joe, resident evil 4, 1080 avalance.

  11. Luis Ogando


    Most of my game-playing mates who own a Wii also have a PS3. The two consoles are pretty incomparable, too; the Wii is great for flailing around the living room with your pals, but is of a (relatively) low spec. But it makes up for it in out-and-out fun. The PS3 has a much higher spec and is well-suited to those of us who like to sit on our fat arses and play kick-ass games. Either way, all 3 main formats (Wii, PS3, Xbox) have large enough user-bases to keep them viable for their respective manufacturers.

    @ Matt Taylor - True. Sony STILL have a fairly substantial market slice with the PS2. Glad someone pointed it out!!

    Incidentally, does anyone know if the price slashing on 360s ties in with M$ losing the HD movie format war?

  12. Christopher Rogers
    IT Angle


    Can you piss off? Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft are not gonna give a rats ass about what you think will happen. They will TELL you what you like and they will TELL you what will happen.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    PS3 versitility

    I'm a gamer, my wife is not... yet she uses the PS3 much more than me - at a guess about 3 hours for every 1 hour that I get to use it.

    Why? the media capabilities

    DVD upscaling is better than using the native upscaling with the TV and the now redundant DVD player (only kept for playing her bollywood VCD's which is the only thing the PS3 doesn't seem to want to play)

    Media file and media server support is simple enough for her to use without having to phone me during the day

    And it plays blu rays, internet radio, BBC Iplayer, MP3's etc etc etc....

    Memory stick from the camera can also be shoved straight in for boring the neighbours with holiday snaps

  14. Anonymous Coward

    re: "unlikely to topple the Wii's global dominance"

    Don't be so sure. PS3 will easilly catch and surpass the 360. Have you seen the total lack of desirable exclusive games on the Xbox in 2009? Coupled with the fact that things havn't progressed graphically at all in the last 12 months. I think it's safe to say Microsoft delivered another "4 year wonder", and the Xbox has had it's day in the sun again, and now it's on a decline.

    Will the PS3 overtake the Wii? I think so, bear in mind the PS2 has shipped 160m consoles, and the Wii is on 30m consoles currently, and again consumers are wising up, the Wii does not have the stamina either, how many more Wii Fit plus and Wii controller dongles can you add to make people continue to stay interested in something thats little more than a hi-tech tickle-me-elmo.

    Sony are in a great position, they have key pieces in all the right places. They have a entry model at less than £90/$100. They have the premium model doing very well to, packed with high end feature likes Blu-ray, and a stellar exclusive game lineup (due to the number of studios they own), and they have the PSP, whilst not selling at DS levels, still doing will with 50m sold.. The UMD Strategy has been binned (even thou Sony won't admit it), and the PSP Store is looking very well stocked.

  15. Anonymous Coward

    re: Profit or loss?

    PS3: Small Profit (for about 6 months or so), will increase once the move to 45nm Cell is complete, later this year. Expect a pricecut then, and for Sony to still manage to increase unit profit also.

    360: Small Loss (they were making small profit, until the price cuts early this year, now it's small unit losses).

    The important factor here, is Sony is a hardware manufacturer, and knows how to productionize their products and engineer in cost reductions at a very fast rate.

    Microsoft make software and know very little about hardware. This is why Sony made it to 65nm over 6 months before Microsoft, despite having a much more complicated Cell CPU...

  16. Hugh_Pym

    I'd like to see

    Some real numbers on how many of these things are sold in the various global markets (or sold and still actually working in the case of the 360) and more importantly how much profit/loss each manufacturer posts.

  17. Alex

    @EvilGav et al

    "The fact is, the Wii has won this round of console sales, by a vast margin, both of the others are also rans with only an outside chance of reaching the dizzying sales of the Wii in their life-time"

    Technically, you are ignoring the PS2, of which is comparible to the Wii (excluding amazing controllers). Having said that, having all three units, the 360 never gets turned on anymore, the Wii only comes out at night after beers, and the PS3 is virtually always on. I am a Fanboi of consoles, but even I can see that each has their own uses (yup, including the HD drive.. it's now a door stop that i can't get rid of, even for a penny on ebay!!!)

    Real numbers from real stats would be interesting, but they're not really going to prove anything against the hearts of the different sects of gamers.

  18. Adam

    Proper high-def audio support?

    Now they've shifted a few boxes, will Sony do a mid-life update on the PS3 to include proper high-definition audio support? I would love to buy one, but only when it supports Dolby TrueHD and DTS:MA correctly.

    (By support, I do of course mean a raw bitstream via the HDMI port, not some downmixed LPCM bitstream)

    Otherwise the whole "look, it plays blu-ray!!!" pitch is lost on those of us who have invested a lot of money in decent high-definition home cinema equipment.

  19. Anonymous Coward

    Who cares?

    Sales figures? Is this what the games industry is all about now?

    PS3 is clearly something of a failure, however, they are not so far behind X360 that they can't catch up. PS3 has the technological edge, however, and will compete effectively against the *next* X-Box.

    Wii ... popular toy, but who's really buying games on this? There are a few titles which everyone owns and then ... what? The Wii is at saturation and it doesn't have the same content as the other two. It's not the same market at all. Face it, Nintendo's main competitor is V-Tech.

    I predict Microsoft will soon release an "X360 Reloaded" which is about twice as powerful (i.e. an incremental upgrade). They will no doubt back this up with Wii and arcade games since the next generation of PC and PlayStation will be ten times as powerful as this generation. Microsoft won't win in a fight against Nintendo just by having a faster processor and GPU, so they're pretty much dead already.

    The ones to watch - assuming you are talking about the progression of video game hardware - are Sony and Intel.

  20. Shane McCarrick

    Each to their own

    I own both a PS3 and a Wii. I actually went and hunted out an original 40Gb with backwards PS2 compatability- and whacked a 320Gb SATA drive in it. We also have 2 DSi's in the house (thankyou Nintendo for having a half reasonable upgrade offer).

    As per the comments above- the different consoles are incomparable. They may serve a similar function- but to different audiences and at different times.

    The component cost of the PS3 is still falling- I picked up a Sony SATA bluray player for my PC last week from Aria for sixty quid....... The move to 45nm fabbing for the PowerPC chips- and the enabling of the 'dead' core will give a 20-30% increase in horsepower for the PS3, and a lower price point. I have loads of family and friends who have PS3s- specifically to play bluray disks- not for gaming at all- its an incredibly clever marketing ploy by Sony. They did the same with the PS2- at the time it was cheaper to buy the console than a stand alone DVD player (how times have changed!). Its marketing 101......

    What I really would like to see is a commoditisation of consoles- whereby they were all based on the one platform, were upgradeable, and both intercompatible and backwards compatible with each other and their predecessors. Product could be differentiated with add-ons, or customisations- allowing both companies but also end users to differentiate their products. Its not quite Lapjack transfers that I have in mind- but you get what I mean. The alienware chasis sells as many units for Dell- as do its innards....... Think of it- a fully upgradeable console- that will play literally anything- and is a single port of call for product developers..... Cool!

    I can dream on, I guess.

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    haha fanboy

    "Don't be so sure. PS3 will easilly catch and surpass the 360. "

    Ah fanboy, i have a ps3/360/wii btw , do you know which one gets the most use?

    .... the one with the newest purchased game! (currently the wii for trauma center: new blood)

    With reguards to business the WII MIGHT be bearing saturation point , but i still think it has a little bit to go yet, but its been nearly 3 years which is probably about right for the console lifecycle.

    The fact that the ps3 outsold the 360 in japan is a non story btw mr fanboy, anyone can see that the ps3 nearly always outsells the 360 in japan, only times that has changed have been when a japenese center game has come out for the 360 (the 360 is much more western console, and western games don't sell to well in japan)

    "Have you seen the total lack of desirable exclusive games on the Xbox in 2009?"

    No i see the total lack of desirable games full stop really, games i wanna play soon are star ocean, the new ratchet and clank, and.... well if it ever comes out , the tales games for 360 and wii. Heres what you should have said in your statement "Have you seen the total lack of exclusive games that i would desire on the Xbox in 2009?. Notice the difference , its all about opinion.

    The ps3 is a ok console, its far too expensive for most people however, and don't go on "its a blue ray player", blue ray players will drop in price, and you need a hd screen to take advantage of it (even more money) but some people DON'T CARE that its a blu eray player, they want a games console (not to mention that the ps3 was behind in its media updates, xvid/divx support was upgraded on the 360 a few months before the ps3's, now which one i use to play videos simply depends on how lazy i am feeling :P )

    Basically sony MIGHT be able to overtake the 360, but they would need one hell of a sales push to overtake the wii, something that msot marketing information would say isn't going to happen, as its already a couple of years into its lifespan , a price drop would cause a sales increase but how much? Not to mention that they need to do something fast or theres a chance of losing developer support, oh and they should nto annoy us UK people as much as well with stupid behaviour on releases and the playstation network!

  22. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    What people forget...

    ...when throwing around total sales figures for the 360 and the PS3 is that the 360 had a head start of nearly one and a half years with no Wii or PS3 to compete with it.

  23. Anonymous Coward

    PCs will win the consoles war!

    "commoditisation of consoles- whereby they were all based on the one platform, were upgradeable, and both intercompatible and backwards compatible with each other and their predecessors. Product could be differentiated with add-ons, or customisations- allowing both companies but also end users to differentiate their products."

    That's the PC gaming industry, where you choose either ATI/AMD or Nvidia, Dell or Asus, but will end up eventually be playing all games with either hardware!... Slap in a few dozen emulators, and you got all the generations back to second's (and almost inventor of this madness) ATARI 2600. I don't know if Odyssey was ever emulated.

    Let's checklist that, shall we?

    - one plafform - IBM PC compatible, (check)

    - upgradeable - I am planning on upgrading my video card separately from everything else to play games (check)

    - intercompatible and backwards compatible - that can be done with emulators, sometimes

    new games are ported STRAIGHT to PC and Consoles. Need For Speed Underground 2, Halo, Half-Life 2 didn´t change a bit in both. (check)

    - add-ons and customisations (CHECK, CHECK, add a few dozens CHECK here). Not just case mods here, the whole thing can be customized. You can paint your PC after your car, you can SHOVE IT in the dash of your car too.

    Video-games BECAME computers (they've always been technically, but in a more narrow POV meaning). The few last bastions of differentiation - the cartridges and perhaps zero-waiting-loading-screens- were the last thing that told them apart (from my Point Of View. Now they are built from the same hardware, use the same media, (CDs) can use a slew of USB devices , can suck your broadband through Ethernet ports, making all this discussion moot.

    For chrissakes, you can fool one of them into loading a LINUX core! That is a PC to me!

    Correcting myself, VGs didn´t become computers, they've ALWAYS been computers (hello MSX fans!). They are just coming home, and merging back together, returning to their origins.

    Remember 3DO, one of the first 32-bit VG's? As an option, you could buy a PCI card, and put it in your PC, and all the games would run from the PCs CD-ROM. The gamepads and joystick would be plugged in the back, and there you had it. Too bad it didn´t evolve.

    A real winner (idea) today would be assembling all the main components of modern VGs in a single PCI-express Card and sell it as a game platform for PCs, if there was anybody insane enough to do it. All the additional hardware aboard the host machine could be used - or not - to upgrade the graphics/gameplay, that would be shown on its fair minimum settings with only the main PCI-E board.

    I was just itching to say all that...

    In a few years, all the VGs will just have merged back in Personal Computers, that's my bet. Wii is a winner for now, however.

  24. Anonymous Coward


    You have no idea what you are talking about. There is no "down-mixing" going on with the PS3 Blu-Ray. That's just Microsoft FUD.

    If anything the onboard decoding and sending decoded 7.1 uncompressed audio to your amp is a far superior solution to sending the encoded data and letting the amp deal with it.

    The software in the PS3 has 1000x more processing power than a DSP solution in a amp, and the PS3 will always be upto date in it's decoding capabilities.

    Clearly you are easilly fooled. I bet you also have gold plated optical leads and oxygen free speaker wire LOL...

    The PS3 will easilly outsell the 360, the 360 is clearly at the end of it's lifecycle, the PS3 is just getting going. 21.3m PS3 sales in 2 years is considerably better than 28m 360 sales in 3 years....

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