First out of the gate? Microsoft! The Xbox 360 division at Microsoft was so pumped, so jazzed, so bursting with frightening Ballmer-like enthusiasm about September's NPD sales data, it couldn't wait for the official numbers to go public. The Xbox 360 topped software charts and jumped to third place on the hardware front following a hefty price drop. And who wouldn't be pumped with "the most affordable next generation console on the market" and "$326 million in total consumer spend in the U.S. and a record software attach rate of 8.1"? This is shouting from the hilltops kind of data. Microsoft also seems pretty pleased about the performance of music games on its system, pointing out that Rock Band has sold "almost 1 million more than the competition combined" on the Xbox 360. It's amped for both Guitar Hero World Tour and its very own Lips. We got confirmation that the company is pleased earlier today, from Microsoft's Aaron Greenberg, who, when asked if he was pleased, said "Absolutely." Full corporate gloat after the jump.

Xbox 360 turns up the volume with a 42% sales surge following price cut and launch of Rock Band 2 347,000 Xbox 360 consoles sold in September following our U.S. price cut on Sept. 5 contributing to a U.S. install base of 11.3 million (September NPD data). Xbox 360 is now the most affordable next generation console on the market—$50 less than the Wii and half the price of the PlayStation 3. Backed by September sales data, which showed $326 million in total consumer spend in the U.S. and a record software attach rate of 8.1 (September NPD data), we know Xbox 360 owners will continue to flex their buying power in the coming weeks when blockbusters like “Gears of War 2,” “Lips,” “Fable II,” “You’re in the Movies” and “Scene It? Box Office Smash” hit shelves. Xbox 360 is the preferred stage for this holiday’s hottest music games New music tracks for popular games like Rock Band and Guitar Hero extend every music experience so every party feels like a new party. Xbox LIVE has delivered more than 80% of the downloadable songs for music games, currently averaging 3.8 million music downloads per month. In total, Xbox 360 users have enjoyed more than 45 million music downloads. (Microsoft internal data) In addition to leading the online music game market, Xbox 360 sells more copies of the world’s favorite music franchises. To date this generation, in the U.S., nearly 2 million copies of the Rock Band franchise have sold on the Xbox 360, almost 1 million more than the competition combined. Life-to-date sales of the Guitar Hero franchise on Xbox 360 top 4 million, securing more than 50% of franchise sales this generation (September NPD data). “Rock Band 2” debuts exclusively on Xbox 360 · Since its U.S. launch on Sept. 14, “Rock Band 2” on the Xbox 360 sold 363,000 copies in September, making it September’s #3 selling game. · This holiday, Xbox 360 will continue to sell more third-party games like “Rock Band 2” than the competition. In September alone, Xbox 360 generated $167 million in third party game sales. Calling all shower singers, wanna-be rappers and pop princesses – “Lips” hits the stage in November · “Lips” will have music fans singing their favorite tunes this holiday season as this totally new singing IP lands around the globe. “Lips” lets people sing the music they want with breakthrough wireless motion-sensitive microphones, backed by master tracks and original music videos. “Lips” hits in mid-November, exclusively for Xbox 360 from Microsoft and iNiS. “Guitar Hero® World Tour” drops on Oct. 26 with a cooperative band experience, newly redesigned controllers and in-game Music Studio music creator · “Guitar Hero World Tour” launches on Oct. 26. Xbox 360 gamers worldwide have early access to an R.E.M. track pack featuring three songs from the band’s new album, and Metallica’s highly anticipated full-length album, “Death Magnetic,” was offered to music fans around the world as downloadable content on Xbox LIVE in its entirety on the same day the record was released. At the Tokyo Game Show last week we announced that the New Xbox Experience will launch worldwide on Nov. 19. For the first time in the history of the internet, 14 million consumers across 24 countries will all tune in at the same time to watch their Xbox 360 completely reinvent itself, for free, with the New Xbox Experience. From the best music games and blockbuster titles, to LIVE Parties, photo sharing and access to a movie and TV show library 30,000 deep through the New Xbox Experience, Xbox 360 has something for everyone this holiday.