A new report from analyst group iSuppli has said that Nintendo has surpassed Sony as the leader in the video game console market in the third quarter of 2007, aided by a proliferation of new titles for both the Wii and the DS.
According to iSuppli, worldwide revenue for Nintendo DS and Wii gaming software amounted to $1.2 billion in the third quarter, up 31.4 percent from $943.6 million in the second quarter and more than double the $611 million from the third quarter of 2006.
In comparison, iSuppli says in the third quarter Sony generated $1 billion in gaming software revenue for its PlayStation 3, PlayStation 2 and PSP systems, while Microsoft posted revenue of $317.8 million for Xbox and Xbox 360 software. In the second quarter, Sony generated $1 billion in gaming software revenue for its gaming platforms, while Microsoft was at $271.9 million.
In particular, iSuppli credits the Wii's mass-market appeal and aggressive courtship of mainstream consumers for its success, contrasted with what it says is Xbox 360's focus on "more serious gamers". The analyst group also blames a high price point coupled with a "lack of compelling titles" for suffering PS3 software sales, and claims these problems may be driving third-party publishers to other platforms.
iSuppli expects Wii software revenue to rise to $1.1 billion worldwide by the fourth quarter of 2008, growing annually at a rate of 29.6 percent from $66 million in the first quarter of 2006. Software revenue for the DS is anticipated to reach $1.2 billion by the fourth quarter of 2008, rising 12.6 percent annually from $333.2 million in the first quarter of 2006, with titles like Mario Kart Wii and Super Mario Galaxy, plus an overall strategy of enlarging the market for casual gamers, predicted to broaden the platform's appeal.
iSuppli Vice president of multimedia content and distribution David Carnevale commented, "Nintendo is likely to maintain its lead in this area, as it expects by the end of 2007 to ship about 200 additional titles, adding to the more than 150 games already released, many from outside publishers. Company software sales should be further boosted by the addition of a new flagship title for the Wii, dubbed Wii Fit, which encourages players to engage in full-body exercises using Wii Balance Boards, performing activities including yoga, push-ups, aerobics and stretching."