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Wii To Sell For Under $250

Redmond, Wash. — Nintendo plans to ship 6 million of its next generation Wii video game consoles to retailers around the world between the platform’s launch in the fourth quarter of this year and March 31, 2007, the end of the company’s fiscal year.

The system’s price, which will incorporate a new “freehand control,” will not exceed $250, the company reported.

This price would give Nintendo a significant cost advantage over new consoles from its chief competitors, Microsoft and Sony, during the critical holiday selling season.

Sony announced at the recent E3 Show that the new PlayStation 3 console will sell for $499 and $599 in two versions, while Microsoft continues to sell its latest Xbox 360 system at a $399 retail price.

Nintendo released the unit-shipment projections as part of a full-year financial forecast, which called for 18 percent growth in sales globally, based on anticipated continued strong demand for the Nintendo DS portable game system, as well as the launch of the Wii platform.

The company also said it expects to sell 17 million Wii games in the period. Exact launch dates, identification of the launch library of titles and details on the unique Virtual Console aspect of Wii will be announced soon, the company said.