3 million units of Xbox 2 this year?

Elijah Wood is still learning to pronounce "teraflop" without giggling for the televised debut of Xbox 2, but before you can say "Could we get some more granularity on that?," Goldman Sachs has additional speculation on the launch of the new game console.

In a research report published Tuesday, the investment company projects the next version of the console will cost between $250 and $300--other analysts have been predicting Microsoft might try to push it up to $400--and will go on sale in October or November. Goldman expects Microsoft will ship 3 million units of the new console by the end of the year.

The report further predicts that Microsoft will continue to manufacture the original Xbox, to address low-end consumers and emerging markets, much as Sony kept the original PlayStation going for several years after the launch of PlayStation 2.

Speaking of which, Goldman doesn't expect the PlayStation 3 to arrive in North America until mid-2006.

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    David Becker
    covers games and gadgets.
     

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