Not one week into its UK sales debut, Sony’s re-imagined, slim-sized PlayStation 3 is already enjoying massive sales, up nearly 1000 percent over the prior week. The UK and Denmark market-researcher Chart-Track, which reported that figure, told biz watcher MCV “the sales increase is very impressive,” adding that the PS3 outsold the Xbox 360 as well as both the Wii and DS Lite by a striking three-to-one ratio.
Points of order: Sony’s PS3 was only behind by a million units in Europe prior to the new model’s debut, so the sales jump has the benefit of a presumably less standoffish customer base (compared to the US, where the unit sales gap is roughly nine times wider). There’s also the question of who’s buying the new units: Are they predominantly new customers, or substantial numbers of existing ones? The answer to the latter will be decisive in effecting the sustainability of the UK-based sales uplift. Then there’s the “calm before the storm” factor. In Japan, sales of the PS3 were down dramatically in anticipation of the new model’s launch on September 3rd. The “three-to-one” week-over-week unit sales leap in the UK probably owes something to a similar effect.
How do things look in the US? We’ll need NPD Group’s numbers to say for sure. Preliminary reports from controversial sales tracker VG Chartz suggest sales doubled last week, but VG Chartz’s figures are notoriously dodgy and frequently “adjusted” without attribution after accredited trackers release their own.