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Retailer: 400,000 Xbox 360s for North America
by Marcus Lai

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Microsoft has revised the allocation of Xbox 360 launch units to 400,000 for the North American region, an EB Games employee said on Saturday. The number of units is far below the 1 million units expected at the launch window and much dire than recent estimates.

The employee, who works at an EB Games brick and mortar retail shop in Southern California, said the store will be able to fulfill only 14 of 43 pre-orders. Another shipment is expected to arrive before Christmas, however the employee did not see entire fulfillment of pre-orders until March of next year.

The store's allocation numbers are in line with numerous reports that retailers will see a severe shortage of Xbox 360 units on launch day.

While several online reports suggest a 'fake shortage' strategy to spur demand, store shipment numbers prove otherwise.

A local Game Rush store in Southern California will receive 10 Xbox 360 premium edition units and does not expect any further stock.

Retail chain Toys R Us will receive as few as 12 units per store.

A Best Buy packing slip revealed that the nation's number one electronic retailer would receive as few as 60 units per store.

At 400,000 units, consumers will see less units on store shelves than the Playstation 2 launch of 2001. At the time, Sony was forced to cut a forecast of 1 million launch units in half due to component shortage. As a result, many consumers were unable to find the console at retail before Christmas.

Online retailers like Walmart.com and EBgames.com have sold out of launch units, though the latter continues to accept pre-orders for units after launch.

Amazon.com resumed pre-orders for Xbox 360 launch units late Friday evening. The e-tailer is offering four bundle configurations that retail for $995.95 each.

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