Today's wrap-up includes more information on DS sales figures, a further look at the PSP's battery life, and new details on Nintendo's music/movie player add-on for the GBA.
- Updated figures from Nintendo itself are showing that its DS handheld has proven to be a strong seller this holiday, with one million systems sold in both Japanese and North American territories, and over two million units combined thus far. 500,000 of the North American systems sold through before Thanksgiving weekend, which was more than 90 percent of the initial shipment. The same amount was sold in Japan in a mere four days after the system’s launch. Nintendo now hopes to hit 2.8 million systems sold by the end of 2004, and a third territorial launch, in Europe, will follow in the first quarter of 2005, with a launch lineup drawn from the existing launch software in the U.S. and Japan.
- IGN PSP has performed a pretty thorough test of the battery in Sony’s new handheld, the longevity of which has been a subject of much curiosity for some time. Sony’s own initial estimates of the PSP’s battery life were revised downward from 10 hours to 5 or 6 at September’s Tokyo Game Show, and IGN’s independent research more or less confirm the later figures for lighter use. The best performance results came from the processor-light but UMD-heavy Vampire Chronicle
replay tests, while the worst results came from heavy Wi-Fi use, which completely drained the battery after only 2 hours and 46 minutes while playing Ridge Racers
- Nintendo has announced the Play-yan add-on device for the Game Boy Advance, a peripheral that will let the GBA play music and movie files from SD cards. The system will have its own audio out and headphone port to make up for the lack of a native port on the SP model, and will support MP3 and MPEG4 for music and movie playback. The Play-yan will draw power from the Game Boy Advance (or Nintendo DS, which it’s also compatible with), which will bring the battery life down to about four hours. Nintendo plans to make the Play-yan available at an unspecified price in February 2005, exclusively through its Japanese online store.