It was just today that we brought you a report from DigiTimes, that said according to sources, Microsoft wouldn’t be kicking mass production of Project Natal up to full gear until 2011. They’ll start shipping in August, sure, as the expected launch date is some time in October, but that original report suggested that a launch from Microsoft would be more of a “rolling launch,” with markets being added to the roll-out as it progressed over the months. However, this new report from The Wall Street Journal turns that report on its head, and we’re certainly confused.
According to sources that the WSJ spoke to, Microsoft is planning for a very aggressive launch, and they are expecting to sell “at least” 5 million Natal units. While the sources could not verify the exact time of launch, or even the price (which is suggested to be $149.99 for the Natal unit on its own, but rumors say a bundle is coming), they did say that it’s going to be aggressive, as Microsoft wants nothing more than to make the units fly off the shelves like hot cakes.
5 million is a very large number, especially for a costly peripheral. But, considering the hope that Microsoft is putting into their upcoming motion-based gaming platform, maybe they really think that’s possible. Our question, though, is if major production isn’t supposed to kick off until 2011, how many Natal’s do they expect to sell at the outset of next year? Let us know: what’s the most you’d pay for Microsoft’s upcoming Natal?