Research firm DFC Intelligence predicts that the Sony PlayStation 4 will sell over 100 million units by 2020 and that the Nintendo NX may not be ready for its big debut.
Sony’s PlayStation 4 is experiencing a phenomenal amount of success. Initially beating out its closest rival, the Xbox One, due to the backlash surrounding Microsoft’s plans to make the console ‘always on’ (users would have to connect to the Internet once every 24 hours), Sony’s console has been going strong for over two years now
At the last count, the PS4 had sold almost 36 million units since its release in November 2013. Moreover, a strong performance during the 2015 holiday period added 5.7 million more sales to the tally, and more than 35 million games were purchased in stores and on the console’s digital storefront. Gamers shouldn’t expect the console’s sales to slow down any time soon, either, as a research firm suggests that the PS4 will sell many millions more in the next few years.
The latest report from research firm DFC Intelligence predicts that, by the end of the decade, Sony will have sold 100 million PS4 units overall, joining an an elite club that includes the PS2, the PS1, the Nintendo Wii, the DS, and the Game Boy. DFC also points out that the PS4 matched its sales forecast for the year 2015 but the Wii U and the Xbox One missed the mark.
The research firm suggests that Sony’s upcoming slate of exclusives will likely have a major impact on PS4 sales moving forward. Many players are excited for Uncharted: A Thief’s End (the game’s new story trailer is also helping fan the flames) while new IPs such as Horizon Zero Dawn, Hellblade and Detroit: Become Human have also drawn strong interest.
Less likely to have an impact on sales, however, are Nintendo and PlayStation VR. DFC Intelligence explains that although “Nintendo is still a major player to watch in the game market,” the company “may not be ready to launch a new game system at this time.” This opinion is unsurprising given that some developers feel that Nintendo is holding back dev kits from third-party developers. Moreover, DFC says that the “potential entry” of companies like Google, Amazon and Apple (which just launched the gaming focused Apple TV) have resulted in a lowering of sales expectations for every company apart from Sony.
Virtual reality gaming “is not expected to have a big impact on the console market,” adds DFC. Sony’s upcoming headset, PlayStation VR “could actually help the PS4 expand its audience over the next few years,” but DFC says that it’s not “crucial to the overall forecasts” as the firm is “taking a conservative attitude to the market”.
Another interesting reveal from the report is that DFC also thinks that the Xbox One and PS4 will have $20 billion annual software revenue between them by 2019 and that almost half of that will come from digital sales. Players are already opting for digital purchases over retail buys – Fallout 4‘s digital day one sales have made that clear – but how publishers and console manufacturers adapt to that over the next few years has yet to be seen.