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Nintendo preparing DS Lite update, pundit claims

Rumours hot up

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Nintendo's DS Lite handheld console is ready for replacement by a third-generation model, a Japanese games industry exec has claimed.

Hirokazu Hamamura, president of games-magazine publisher Enterbrain, last week forecast that Nintendo will announce an updated DS at this year’s E3 gaming conference, which takes place in July.

Hamamura’s prediction may or may not be based on insider knowledge, and he doesn't appear to have forecast anything more than a launch date. However, that hasn't stopped other pundits weighing and, and gaming websites are now ripe with speculation.

Many say Hamamura’s prediction is reasonable because the original DS was released in 2004 and the DS Lite in 2006 – making mid-2008 a rational timescale.

Several sites have also suggested that any next-generation DS could be dubbed either the 'Liter' or the 'Extreme', although Nintendo has refused to comment on Hamamura’s prediction.

According to market watcher Media Create, the DS has been generally outsold by Sony's PSP in Japan in the weeks since the start of the year. In the seven days, to 6 April, for example, Nintendo sold 55,190 DS Lites while Sony sold 120,964 PSPs.

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