October Sales Data – Christmas Season Predictions

Nintendo down 50%, Sony Leads The Month

Sony led the month of October with over 990,000 unit sales pulling ahead of Microsoft by almost 230,000 sales in the last two weeks.  Two contributing factors to Sony pulling ahead were most likely the launch of the Playstation Move, Sony’s motion controller, and anticipation of Microsoft’s Kinect for Xbox 360, with people opting to pre-order the Xbox 360S 4GB and 250GB bundles with the Kinect device.

More interestingly would be the continued decline of Nintendo’s sale of the Wii console.  Selling only 700,000 units for the month of October, the company has experienced a 50% decline in sales year over year.  I see this to be a continuing trend.  With the holiday season rapidly approaching, the introduction of Sony’s and Microsoft’s motion controllers at a comparable cost to the Wii offer a lot more in the packaging with high definition graphics and the robust library of games that you can find on the Playstation Network and Xbox Live.

Year over year, Microsoft is the only company to have had an increase in sales for the month of October at 19.43%.  Sony experienced a 3.76% decline which is almost flat in sales.  Last year’s sales boost was aided by the release of the PS3 slim.  And Nintendo suffered the most with a 53.8% loss in sales year over year.

Looking Ahead

VGChartz has not yet released the sales data for the week ending November 7 as of yet, but I’m expecting a significant sales boost for Microsoft with the launch of Kinect for Xbox 360.  With Microsoft and Sony staying comparatively close in sales through the Christmas season.

October Sales Data And YOY Comparison

Nintendo on the other hand is in a huge sales decline this year, having only three months so far of YoY growth, two of those months being less than 3%.  It’s possible that the Wii has hit its saturation point globally, however, I believe that the reduced price tags on both the Playstation 3 and the Xbox 360 have been large contributors as well.

This analysis is based on worldwide sales data for the week ending October 3 to the week ending October 30 made available by VGChartz.

Christmas Holiday Sales

I believe that the Christmas season (October -December) may see sales for Sony and Microsoft taking the lead over Nintendo for the first time in many years.  I believe that the launch of the Kinect and Move controllers, as well as a good selection of casual and health motivated games, along with the offerings of high definition graphics, media and services by the two companies will sway consumers to spend the additional $50-$100 and opt for the Xbox 360 and Playstation 3.

I believe that the decline in sales will continue through the Christmas season for Nintendo, with unit sales from October to December this year in the 4 to 6 million unit range.  Keeping track with the 50% loss in sales experienced in October.

The success of the Sony Move controller has provided a much needed sales boost for the console maker as they have lagged behind Microsoft in sales since June of this year, losing their million unit lead to within just a few thousand units, and then back to a quarter million unit lead with the launch of Move.  Sales are currently keeping pace with their sales from last October leading me to believe that Sony will essentially stay flat through November and December with total unit sales rounding out to around six million units.

Microsoft is seeing continued month over month growth with the launch of the Xbox 360S, and with the release of the Kinect motion controller, I believe it will continue to bolster their sales.  I believe that total console sales for Microsoft this Christmas season will continue to trend upward in the 20% range, bringing them dead even with the Playstation 3 at six million unit sales.

Overall for the yearly totals, I believe that both Sony and Microsoft will come ahead of Nintendo by approximately 2 to 4 million units.  This will mark the first full year that Nintendo has not been able to maintain a sales lead over the other two console makers.

Coming Soon

VGChartz should be soon releasing weekly sales data for the week ending November 7, which will give us a better indication as to how Kinect for Xbox 360 is impacting the holiday sales totals.

Source: VGChartz

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