Origin crosses 40 million members

EA's virtual marketplace reaches new user milestone after SimCity launch; weeklong Player Appreciation Sale going on now.

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Following the record-setting SimCity launch, Electronic Arts' Origin service has crossed 40 million members, a new milestone for the platform. EA confirmed the new membership figure today, which is up from 39 million at the end of 2012.

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This is not the only milestone Origin has reached recently. The service recorded 1.3 million peak concurrent users following the SimCity launch.

By comparison, competitor Valve's Steam virtual platform has 50 million members as of September 2012. There are 4.6 million members logged on right now, with a peak concurrent user record of 5.7 million.

To mark the new membership milestone, EA announced today its first-ever Player Appreciation Sale. Beginning today and lasting one week, gamers can grab more than 200 titles through Origin at markdowns of as much as 70 percent.

The Origin Player Appreciation Sale is available to users worldwide and includes PC and Mac downloadable titles and expansions, in addition to packaged products for consoles. Some highlights include Crysis 3 ($30), Dead Space 3 ($30), Mass Effect 3 ($10), Battlefield 3 ($12), and all five Walking Dead episodes for $10.

Researchers recently discovered an Origin exploit that allows hackers to remotely highjack a user's computer to load malicious code instead of a game. EA said it is investigating the issue.

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