Internet-connected game consoles will generate $8 billion in revenue for the Big Three console manufacturers through online content and services in 2013, says a new Parks Associates report.
Parks Associates' research shows that Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo stand to reap big gains thanks to revenue streams from digital distribution, downloadable games and content, and multiplayer gaming services.
The researchers' estimates also include "avatar-based microtransactions," likely projecting based on future products like Sony's PlayStation Home and Microsoft's Xbox Live Party, although neither company has explicitly announced how they plan to monetize those online environments.
According to Parks' report, Microsoft "currently dominates" the online content and services market, but Sony and Nintendo could close the gap as their user bases increase and monetization methods diversify.
Michael Cai, Parks Associates' director of Broadband and Gaming, says that broadband connectivity is a "key enabler" for new business models, and pegs digital video and downloadable games and content as the "most promising" among emerging online revenue opportunities.
"Led by Microsoft's success in Xbox Live, all three console makers are dreaming up many innovative offerings to entice console households to get connected and spend more money," says Cai.