A new connected game and entertainment console forecast from IDC concludes that the number of game console bundles shipped worldwide in 2013 will be marginally higher than the 2012 total of approximately 33 million bundles, ending a four-year slide that began in 2009. The forecast also suggests that Sony PlayStation 4 (PS4) bundle sales will edge out Microsoft Xbox One sales this holiday season due to a variety of factors, most notably the PS4's lower price point.
IDC predicts that prepaid full-game, micro-game, and add-on download revenues derived through connected console channels (Xbox LIVE, PlayStation Store and eShop) will exceed that of worldwide PC-based prepaid full-game, micro-game, and add-on download revenues (digital PC games distributed through Steam, Origin, and
"The number of online console gamers around the globe is on pace to exceed 165 million by 2017," said
The forecast also considers the outlook for gaming-capable smart TV, microconsole, and set-top box (STB) gaming. IDC anticipates that video game software revenues generated on smart TV, microconsole, and gaming-capable set-top box (STB) platforms from cable/telecom companies - and including cloud-streaming options from some of these providers - is rising quickly but will still represent less than 10% of all TV-centric, digital game-related spending in 2017.
"The differences between traditional game consoles, PCs connected to HDTV's, and a variety of set-top-boxes and smart TVs that can play games will eventually be semantic," explained Ward. "And it appears unlikely that
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