PS3 claims "top home console" slot as Wii sales decline

The PlayStation 3 is expected to claim the “top home console” slot for the month of September. According to EEDAR analyst Jesse Divnich, hardware unit sales for next-generation systems are likely to decrease by four percent over last year for the month of September – with all platforms except the Nintendo Wii and Sony PSP posting year-over-year gains.

Divnich told TG Daily that Sony’s recent PS3 price cut played a major role in driving sales of the high-end console.

“Before the price cut, the PlayStation 3 was the [most expensive] console –  even though it offered a ton of value with its Blu-Ray and WiFi features,” explained Divnich. “Whether we are in an economic boom or a depression, consumers have a hard time paying for any item when competitors offer a lower priced alternative. Clearly, at $299 Sony hit the sweet spot between value and pricing.”

Divnich also predicted that video game sales for September 2009 will total $715 million, marking a 16 percent increase over 2008.

“Software sales are expected to post a positive year-over-year gain, the first time in seven months. Overall, September sales and retail data indicates that the pre-holiday season is off to a good start,” said Divnich. “EEDAR believes this is a combination of both lower hardware prices and the release of a number of highly anticipated titles.”

However, Divnich emphasized that September sales trends were unlikely to be repeated in October.

“Based upon EEDAR’s forecasts, October’s new releases would need to produce $225 million to post flat year-over-year comps. Currently, EEDAR projects high single digit growth in October, low double digit growth in November, and single digit growth in December. Looking ahead to 2010, EEDAR currently forecasts a 13 percent increase in software sales for the first half of 2010.”