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Microsoft Corp., the world’s most powerful maker of software, said Thursday that sales of the Xbox 360 game consoles are inline with expectations and ten million of the game machines are likely to be shipped this year.

“Xbox 360 has sold 6 million consoles worldwide life to date and achieved record cumulative attach rates for software and peripherals in the United States, while Xbox Live passed the four million member mark during the quarter,” Microsoft said in a statement dedicated to results of the company’s financial results for the first quarter of fiscal year 2007.

By the end of the year the company hopes to ship about 10 million of Xbox 360 consoles, whereas by mid 2007 approximately 13 to 15 million are expected to be installed.

But even though revenues of Microsoft’s entertainment division were up 70% year over year, it still posted $96 million lost. Nevertheless, its loss is tangibly lower than $173 million during the same period a year ago.

Microsoft Xbox 360 console is based around microprocessor developed by IBM, high-definition visual processing unit designed by ATI Technologies, I/O controller engineered by SiS and some other key components. The gaming machine will provide a broad set of multimedia capabilities in addition to games. Depending on the bundle, Microsoft Xbox 360 currently costs $299 or $399 in the U.S.

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