Sony originally forecasted that 400,000 PlayStation 3 consoles would be sold on launch day. Launch day came and went, and not even half of the projected amount were sold. It took two additional weeks after the launch for  Sony to meet its original goal of 400,000.  Between the launch, and the end of 2006, they were able to sell 1 million consoles, about half of their 2 million goal.  So, what does this mean for Sony?

Dave Karraker, spokesman for Sony was asked whether they were worried about this, and his response? “Are we worried about strong sales of the Wii or Xbox 360? Not really,” he said. “It was a great year for the industry overall. With the tide all ships rise.” They led the previous generation of game consoles with their PlayStation 1 and 2 with 70% of the global market.  Perhaps they think that there is plenty of time for them to catch up to the Xbox 360 and the Nintendo Wii (which was projected to sell 4 million by the end of 2006).

Despite there being a limited supply of consoles, stores have them in-stock! Sony says the limited supply is due to manufacturing problems with the blue laser diodes, a vital part of the Blu-ray disk drive, one reason the price of the PS3 is a bit overwhelming. In fact, even with the limited supply, one GameStop store(pictured above) has placed a sign in the window saying “We have PS3 systems in stock… Plenty of them!” Whether that picture is legit or not is another question, but it does raise a good point. By no means are the PS3’s flying off the shelves like the Wii did.

Obviously comparing the Wii with the PlayStation 3 isn’t exactly comparing apples to apples.  They’re very different with the PlayStation 3 loaded with next generation features, and a 20 or 60 GB hard drive. But, the point is that the Wii is clearly far more in demand than the PlayStation 3 is and it could be for a variety of reasons.  I don’t know that I’d want to be Sony right now, but the tide can always turn.  They plan to sell 6 million consoles by the end of March, a pretty hefty goal to fulfill with hundreds of PS3’s sitting on store shelves collecting dust at the moment.