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Xbox supply goes fast at local stores

DEMOPOLIS – When shoppers hit the streets for “Black Friday,” there is one particular item many will pursue. The Microsoft XBox 360, which was released Tuesday at 12:01 a.m., has flown off shelves everywhere it is sold.

Demopolis is no exception. Wal-Mart Manager Antoine Thomas said they were already out of the new gaming system.

“We have already sold out,” Thomas said. “We ordered six of them and they were gone by Tuesday.”

New systems have been hard to come by, Thomas said. Demands, he said, were so high that new shipments could take a while to arrive.

“I’m not sure when we will get another shipment in,” Thomas said. “I think they have been selling out pretty quick everywhere, so we will get them when we can.”

At a 24-hour Wal-Mart location in Woodbridge, Va, staffers said the waiting line had exceeded their inventory by 10 a.m. Monday.

Most retailers have kept the number of consoles they have in stock secretive, but Morcrosoft indicated there was a plan to launch the console worldwide. This plan could mean fewer consoles for North America in the early stages.

In a release from the Microsoft Corporation, Vice President Peter Moore said they are expecting large shipments in coming months.

“In the first 90 days, I believe we will be somewhere between 2.5 and three million units worldwide,” Moore said.

The new gaming system has the attention of shoppers for several reasons. Some want the console for its high definition graphics and gaming aptitude.

But the consoles have several other features. The new X-Box can play music, display photos and show DVDs. These items will eventually tie in elements of Microsoft’s new online initiative, called Windows Live, said company Chairman Bill Gates.

Gates said Monday he expects Xbox Live, Microsoft’s service that allows gamers worldwide to play one another, to eventually work with a Microsoft instant messenger that is slated to become part of Windows Live.