Nintendo Breaks More Sales Records, Sells Over 5 Million Consoles In December

The holidays were very merry for Nintendo which sold 3.04 million Nintendo DS handhelds during the month of December, ending 2008 with the best-selling console in the United States, blowing far past the console competition.

Nintendo hardware secured the top spot last month — as it had done every month in 2008 — thanks to record-breaking Nintendo DS sales. It also secured the number two spot, yet again, with strong sales of the Wii. The console sold in excess of 2.1 million units to U.S. consumers, besting its record-smashing November take of 2.04 million.

But it's the Nintendo DS that set the bar highest, as no video game platform has ever sold more than 3 million units in one month, breaking the PlayStation 2s record of 2.7 million in December of 2002. Total Nintendo hardware sales were over 5.19 million for the month.

The Xbox 360 took third place, selling over 1.4 million, almost twice that of its PlayStation 3 competition.

  • Nintendo DS - 3,040,000
  • Wii - 2,150,000
  • Xbox 360 - 1,440,000
  • PSP - 1,020,000
  • PlayStation 3 - 726,000
  • PlayStation 2 - 410,000

Total hardware spend for the month of December was an impressive $1.88 billion USD, bringing the year total to $7.81 billion. That's an 11% improvement over the previous year, a 2% improvement over the previous month.

"38 months into this generation of hardware, the three new systems have sold a combined 38.2 million units, whereas at the same point last generation, in December 2003, the three systems had sold 36.9 million units," writes NPD analyst Anita Frazier. "Factoring in the continued strong sales of the PS2 even after the new systems were released, 52 million systems have sold at retail since November '05."