Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The Analysts Catch Up with Sony

Following up on yesterday's post on Sony's PS3 sales we have this word from Deutsche Bank analyst:

To put the PS3's situation in context, Patel said, "PS3 consoles are available at retail but sales are lackluster. Its 130K units sold in February was less than Xbox 360 sales last year (160K) and even less than the original Xbox sales of 140K in Feb-2002."

That's right: The PS3 isn't just selling worse than xBox 360--it's selling worse than the original xBox.

In the same vein, the Wershovenist Pig sends us this entry:

Nintendo changed the playing field in the handheld wars by taking risk - by changing the input (stylus) and introducing the two-screen layout - while Sony focused on graphics and processing power. The results thus far are conclusive - and damning - for Sony. The big question is whether or not the proposed changes are meaningful enough to tip the competitive balance, and if they are truly going to result in a handheld player with mass appeal.

As noted above, it appears that as goes the handheld market so goes the console market, with the Wii continuing to trounce the PS3 by a 3:1 margin. Further, another interesting tidbit are the latest web traffic stats for the "Big Three" native sites - Nintendo.com, Xbox.com and PlayStation.com. Nintendo.com is up 91% year-over-year, while PlayStation.com is down 8% over the similar period (FYI, Xbox.com is up a healthy 47% YoY). Conclusive of Sony's defeat? Of course not. But are the trends disturbing for Sony? Absolutely. At some point Sony has to get the joke: is it super hi-tech and niche or mass market? Because right now it is straddling two worlds and not serving either one - or its shareholders - particularly well.

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