Who is winning?

According to iSuppli  looking at software sales, Nintendo moved up to number one in Q3 with $1.2 billion, Sony were down at number two with $1 billion and Microsoft were still at number three with $317.8 million.

This possibly tells us a number of things:

  • The Wii attach rate is going up. Some analysts say that the Wii will have a low attach rate because of the more casual nature of it’s usage. There is a contrarian view that Wii will ultimately have a higher attach rate because there are more likely to be several family members using the same console.
  • Nintendo 3rd party publishers can get big sales if they make the right games for the platforms. In other words fun for the broadest possible demographic. Wiifying something designed for another platform is a bad idea.
  • Sony are still milking it from PS2. PS3 and PSP can’t be giving them much turnover. The PS2 has such an immense installed base and a high percentage of users are holding back on upgrading because of the uncertainty in the market. As these customers gradually upgrade PS2 volumes will slowly decrease.
  • Sony have a huge problem getting PS3 volumes up. Too many former exclusives are now multi platform and too many publishers and developers have moved assets away onto other, more lucrative, platforms.
  • In Q4 Microsoft may well double (or more) their Q3 figures with a string of AAA titles including Halo 3. They seem to have Sony well beaten in the HD console stakes simply by having more and better games, a situation that seems set to continue.

This generation of console wars is panning out as the most interesting yet. How long will Wii sales hold up? Can Sony recover the PS3 disaster? Will the Microsoft machine continue to steamroller itself up the market? What do you think?