UK Hardware: Cube fightback continues

35% surge in sales puts Nintendo back in second place - just.

Nintendo's Cube revival has continued in impressive fashion in time for the Christmas rush, with Chart-Track figures released today revealing sales of the budget-priced console rising by 35 per cent week on week, placing the console ahead of the Xbox for the first time in weeks.

Sales just shy of 20,000 will be cause for cautious optimism at camp Nintendo, which has seen sales jump by a factor of 18 since it slashed the price of the console to £79.99 last month. The introduction of the Mario Kart pack has given the console even greater momentum, and hardware sales are running at almost double the level they were at this time last year.

There was even better news on the GBA front, with combined sales almost double the Cube figure, up around 16 per cent week on week, with the SP commanding the majority of sales.

Meanwhile, Microsoft fell just a few hundred units short of the GameCube figure, with sales nudging up a few percentage points on last week - although Microsoft will be disappointed to note that despite all its bundling efforts and reduced price, sales are still a few thousand units down on the same time last year. Still, with the one million UK installed base milestone now in sight, there is cause for celebration.

Sony, as ever, continued to go from strength to strength, selling well over three times more than Xbox or Cube, and upping its sell through by 19 per cent week on week - and also commanded some 47 per cent of the total software units sold last week.

Spare a thought for Nokia, though, which saw dismal game store sell-through yet again, reaching their lowest point yet - at just over 200 units. Yet again, we can only speculate on how well the "Game Deck" is performing in its mobile phone store heartland.

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Kristan Reed

Kristan Reed

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Kristan is a former editor of Eurogamer, dad, Stone Roses bore and Norwich City supporter who sometimes mutters optimistically about Team Silent getting back together.

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