February 20, 2004 - As the console war rages on, Juniper Research has released the results of a new study that point to loftier issues for the future of gaming. The big news being that the next generation of consoles will outsell all previous platforms creating 35 billion dollars of revenue for the industry.
In addition to a larger percentage of the public buying consoles, they will also being doing more than playing games with the technology. Juniper reports that numerous developers will be integrating high-speed internet and wireless connectivity between machines and handhelds. This allows manufacturer to finally turn the next generation of game consoles into the all encompassing media centers that they have been promising for years. It also means that a gaming console will become such a mainstream purchase that it can no longer be viewed as a niche market.
The other big news is the future of handheld gaming. Next generation handheld hardware revenues are forecast to reach $25 billion by 2008. Up to this point Nintendo has clearly dominated the handheld market. However, things will become more interesting as Sony offers up some competition with its PSP and other new machines such as the Zodiac and Gamepark try to grab a piece of the pie.
Online gaming from consoles will reach 25 million regular users by 2008. Features such as downloadable content, and even downloadable games will become commonplace. This will be largely influenced by the increase of always-on broadband access.
On the down side, as a new generation of consoles approach, the industry typically sees a slump in sales. The reason for this being that people will hold off on purchasing hardware that is soon to be replaced.
From this report we can assume that as time goes by, console gaming is only going to become more popular. As it solidifies its place in mainstream culture the average video game fan will see the benefits of more and better games for a lower cost.
Just so you guys know: 75% of this crap [you read on the internet] is made up, either by the writer, or the wrestler the writer is getting the dirt from. Just so you know. -- Statement by "Tammy Sytch", from Hyatte's Dec. 29th column ... Lest we forget.
And to think the first two games I ever had were Pong and Space Invaders for the 2600.
Actually, speaking of which...I was up at my then-GF's parents' house for Xmas for a few days, and one afternoon her and I went rooting through the attic looking for something of hers and we found their old 2600 and about 10 games. So of course later on we had to hook it up to the TV in our room to see if it still worked, and it did.
Next thing I hear is "I can beat your ass sideways in pong", which was a good pick for her since she knew my air hockey weakness (good shooter, awful goalie) and of course she exploited it. The punchline to this is that we ended up playing for about 3 hours and we were so into it that we missed her mom calling us down for dinner and when we finally did come down, she just gives both a funny look and asks, "what are you guys, six years old?". The funny part was for that afternoon, we were.
PSA: If you've thought about getting PS+, maybe this week's the time? The "buy a year, get 3 months deal" expires this time next week, while Sony's running a seperate "spend $50 on PSN, get $10 back deal right now until April 1st.