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Sony Computer Entertainment Inc., a subsidiary of Sony Corp., recently announced that it had shipped 90 million of Sony PlayStation 2 consoles as of June 2005. The figure confirms great popularity of the console and outlines even growing recognition of home gaming machines, particularly in Europe.

“Since its launch in Japan on March 4th, 2000, sales of PlayStation 2 has grown steadily, securing its place as the most favorite computer entertainment platform in homes around the world,” the company said in a statement.

The worldwide shipments of Sony PlayStation 2 included 36.48 million units in North America, 32.48 million consoles in Europe and 21.04 million devices in Asia, including Japan, according to Sony. The designer of the video game console noted that the PlayStation 2 reached 90 million milestone 27 months faster than its predecessor, the PlayStation console. Still, the installed base of the original PlayStation is higher than that of the PlayStation 2 and is currently at over 100 million units.

On the software side, more than 5000 game titles are currently available for the PlayStation 2 worldwide, with cumulative shipment reaching over 800 million units. Software shipment reached 252 million units in 2004. Sony expects even more “new and attractive” titles to be released by a number of developers and publishers, which may further spur sales of games for the PlayStation 2 console.

Earlier this year Microsoft reiterated its forecast for Xbox console sales to a worldwide installed base of 21 million to 22 million in late January, 2005, a bit higher than previous estimate of 20 million units. Such update of the guidance reflects growing interest to the consoles in general, as Sony also said it expected the number of PlayStation 2 consoles shipped in its most recent fiscal year to be higher than expected. In total, the company shipped 16.7 million consoles throughout the most recent fiscal year.

Sony’s next-generation PlayStation 3 console is expected to hit the market in mid-2006.

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