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3DS closing in on 1 million sales in UK

Tracking closely behind DS
3DS closing in on 1 million sales in UK
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Nintendo's 3DS console is set to break through the 1 million sales barrier in the UK, Gfk Chart-Track data has revealed.

But the handheld system will have taken around three months longer than its predecessor to reach the magic figure once it passes the milestone early next month.

Magic million

According to a source, this week's Gfk Chart-Track report shows the 3DS has sold nearly 950,000 units after 61 weeks on sale.

The DS, meanwhile, reached the one 1 mark in just 51 weeks, back in March 2006.

Gfk Chart-Track's business group director Dorian Bloch said that it was important to take the price difference into account when comparing the two handheld consoles.

In the 3DS' opening 10 weeks, he revealed that the average price of the system was £202, compared with a mere £98 for the original DS.

Price points

Since then, of course, Nintendo has slashed the price of the 3DS, with most retailers now charging around £140 for the base system - still around 40 percent higher than the DS' price at an equivalent point after its initial release.

Despite its well-publicised early struggles, the 3DS has since put in a robust performance, and by the end of last year the company announced that it had become Nintendo's fastest-selling console, worldwide.

The figures are perhaps even more creditable given that the 3DS has faced much stiffer competition in the handheld gaming sector than the DS did in the pre-smartphone era of mid-2006.

Worldwide, Nintendo recently announced that the 3DS's installed base had reached 17.13 million units for the financial year ending 31 March 2012.

It expects to sell a further 18.5 million units worldwide during the current financial year, along with another 2.5 million DSi consoles.

Sony slump

By comparison, Sony recently announced that it expects to sell 10 million PS Vita units in the same period, bringing its total installed base up to 11.8 million across the world. was also able to exclusively reveal that Vita sales in the UK have just passed 100,000 units, 10 weeks after it first hit the shop shelves. That means its current tally sits at less than a third of the amount PSP had managed at the same stage of its life.

Meanwhile, sales of 3DS software is expected to more than double in the 2012-2013 financial year, rising from 36 million to 73 million units across the globe.

Key first party titles due for release during the period will include New Super Mario Bros. 2, Paper Mario, Luigi's Mansion 2, as well as new titles in the successful Animal Crossing and Brain Training series.

Nintendo also recently announced it will make all of its first party 3DS titles available for download for the first time, beginning with New Super Mario Bros. 2 this August.