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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 May, 2003, 10:29 GMT 11:29 UK
GameCube 'may die out'
GameCube pack
Metroid Prime couldn't save GameCube
Nintendo must find a strategy to try and stop its GameCube from dying out, an analyst has warned, after the games maker reported poor results.

The Japanese firm missed its sales target for GameCube and saw its profits drop by 37% in the year to March.

The demise of GameCube is seen as a direct result of competition from Sony's PlayStation 2 and Microsoft's Xbox.

Just 9.55 million Nintendo GameCubes have been sold so far, just one-fifth of the number of PlayStation 2 consoles shipped worldwide - although PS2 hit the market about 20 months before the GameCube.

The PlayStation has, however, been on the market far longer.

"Trying to prevent GameCube from dying out is the only strategy left for Nintendo," said Takeshi Tajima of BNP Paribas.

"When the gap in market share is this great, a rally from behind is virtually impossible."

Far behind

The GameCube has been Nintendo's flagship product.

And another area of Nintendo's business, its handheld GameBoy, is also now under attack from Sony which is shortly to launch a portable PlayStation.

Even Nintendo has admitted that Sony has done much better at targeting customers who are over 18, the fastest-growing market segment in North America and Europe.

The firm's profits fell to 67.3bn yen (350m; $572m), and it has predicted a further fall in profits in the current year.

The BBC's Rico Hizon
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