Survey Finds It's Time for a Console Price-Cut

Survey Finds It's Time for a Console Price-Cut

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According to survey conducted by an independent research group, hardware manufacturers should cut the prices of consoles to bring in new users.

Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo have all said that the next generation of consoles is a long time away. Instead, the manufacturers are betting on motion control systems like Kinect and PlayStation Move to fuel more sales to the non-core audience. Unfortunately, a survey conducted by market research group Cowen and Company seems to indicate that strategy is not creating a new audience for videogames. Cowen surveyed 2301 adults and asked a series of questions on their videogame buying habits and intentions for what they may buy in the future. The survey found that so-called core software titles are still the best investment for game companies and analysts suggest that lowering the prices of the consoles would do much more to attract new customers than fancy control schemes.

"None of the hardware manufacturers have reduced their hardware prices since the last holiday," the survey reported. "We believe that the hardware manufacturers have left unit sales on the table by not reducing price points from $199 to $179 and $299 to $249 for the applicable consoles, and that doing so would have driven a more significant boost to hardware sales than the release (for Microsoft and Sony) of new motion-sensing peripherals."

Cowen and Company believes that the high prices affects software sales. "We view continued stubbornly high hardware price points as one of the key factors dragging down software sales," the report read.

The new motion control is not doing much to attract new gamers. "Although our survey results show strong demand for the two new motion sensing peripherals among current Xbox 360 and PS3 owners, demand among non-owners and prospective buyers appears tepid," said Cowen's report.

If a videogame company wants to make money in today's market, the best bet is to produce high-quality, high-profile games like CodBlops, oddly enough. "The results of our Fall 2010 Videogame Survey do not change our view that high-quality games for the core gamer remain the best investment for videogame publishers despite changes to the structure of the videogame industry."

It's hard to say how accurate market research like this is or what it means for the industry moving forward, but it's certain that the sales of titles and hardware this holiday season will impact the future of games greatly. If Microsoft and Sony can't break into the casual market with Kinect and Move, perhaps we will see more growth for core games and even news of a new console generation.

Source: Gamesindustry.biz and CVG

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What I have taken from this is that console prices should be lowered in time for christmas, and that developers should give up on trying to bring in the casual market :D

/headdesk.

You say the way to sell more things is to drop their price?

Greg Tito:
"We believe that the hardware manufacturers have left unit sales on the table by not reducing price points from $199 to $179 and $299 to $249 for the applicable consoles, and that doing so would have driven a more significant boost to hardware sales than the release (for Microsoft and Sony) of new motion-sensing peripherals.":P

umm... since the 360 is already being sold for less than the sum of its parts (its what my videogame design professor told me), i would assume selling it even cheaper is a bad move

but i dont know about he PS3, maybe it should be cheaper :P

WOAH.

You mean, by lowering the price, people will be happier and buy it?

Azaraxzealot:

Greg Tito:
"We believe that the hardware manufacturers have left unit sales on the table by not reducing price points from $199 to $179 and $299 to $249 for the applicable consoles, and that doing so would have driven a more significant boost to hardware sales than the release (for Microsoft and Sony) of new motion-sensing peripherals.":P

umm... since the 360 is already being sold for less than the sum of its parts (its what my videogame design professor told me), i would assume selling it even cheaper is a bad move

but i dont know about he PS3, maybe it should be cheaper :P

lol No. The PS3 was costing Sony money when it was 600$.

Making great games gets me to buy a console and so far this generation hasn't impressed me enough to make me feel like i'm missing out.
A few more ORIGINAL titles would be tasty due to the fact that I play a game that I like and it gets syndicated into infinite boring sequels instead of realising what people liked was that it was an original idea

The_root_of_all_evil:
/headdesk.

You say the way to sell more things is to drop their price?

Lower prices is probably a good way to sell more things, but it's only a good idea for the seller if they end up with more money overall due to enough people buying. If they could get more people to buy without lowering prices, they'd be better off. Hence the question if motion controls are doing so. Apparently, they're not.

Azaraxzealot:

Greg Tito:
"We believe that the hardware manufacturers have left unit sales on the table by not reducing price points from $199 to $179 and $299 to $249 for the applicable consoles, and that doing so would have driven a more significant boost to hardware sales than the release (for Microsoft and Sony) of new motion-sensing peripherals.":P

umm... since the 360 is already being sold for less than the sum of its parts (its what my videogame design professor told me), i would assume selling it even cheaper is a bad move

but i dont know about he PS3, maybe it should be cheaper :P

That's historically been the case for base hardware. Game companies usually make money off software sales.

My survey says that they should give me systems and games for free.

hmm, I'm actually quite surprised that they aren't doing as well as I thought with the whole attracting casual gamers with shiny new gimmick strategy (I'm not that against the concept of motion control's, these just seem like cheap cash-ins). Time to give up casual gamers as Nintendo's property and expand the core gaming market? I think so

I don't think lowering the 360 price any further would be logical. The PS3 might use some more but the 360 isn't that expensive anymore.

Those who aren't willing to buy the console now will definitly not obtain that much games. They have other priorities as well.

Maybe they shouldn't make crappy consoles.
At least make them worth the high price.
Currently the three consoles fall into three categories:
A well built machine that could be capable of a lot if it got even half decent support.
A machine that gets very good support but is likely to break.
And a children's toy that's fun but doesn't get the AAA games released.

What's stupid is that while it sometimes costs more to make the machine than what it costs, they are all overprices for what they have to offer consumers.

Most of my friends who owned a console last generation still haven't moved on and I really can't blame them.

Seems like wishful thinking for consumers who always want lower prices to be honest. I can't see Sony or Microsoft doing this, or even paying attention to it. Perhaps I'll be proven wrong however.

Truthfully the only way they would sell me a new console is if Sony was to bread down and re-release PS-3s with backwards PS-2 compadibility. Mine is getting old, and I'd like a bigger hard drive. I might try and put away enough money for one of those, and I think there would be a market for them besides me.

I already think they've tapped the casual gaming market as far as it's going to go. I'm not sure if the "Wii-like" motion control set ups they are pimping right now are going to catch on. I think the mania for those things is past (I could be wrong), and they definatly don't seem to be aiming them at the core/hardcore gaming crowd. When the mods techno-geeks are making are more interesting than the hardware itself, or the applications being released for it, that's a problem.

What's more, as "ENN" sort of pointed out, the space requirements for this kind of thing seem to be substantial.

On top of it, there have been many fads that have had people looking like fools and having fun doing so for a while. Truthfully I think people spazzing out with motion controls is kind of over with, and it's on the verge of going the way of things like the Hula Hoop. :)

Survey says: people are fucking poor because our global economy has been exposed (which is different, and far worse, than a simple recession), so the distributors of entertainment products should wise up and realize they don't deserve untold millions for nonessential contributions to society.

Wh00t, I might get a new console! :P

Therumancer:
Seems like wishful thinking for consumers who always want lower prices to be honest. I can't see Sony or Microsoft doing this, or even paying attention to it. Perhaps I'll be proven wrong however.

Truthfully the only way they would sell me a new console is if Sony was to bread down and re-release PS-3s with backwards PS-2 compadibility. Mine is getting old, and I'd like a bigger hard drive. I might try and put away enough money for one of those, and I think there would be a market for them besides me.

I already think they've tapped the casual gaming market as far as it's going to go. I'm not sure if the "Wii-like" motion control set ups they are pimping right now are going to catch on. I think the mania for those things is past (I could be wrong), and they definatly don't seem to be aiming them at the core/hardcore gaming crowd. When the mods techno-geeks are making are more interesting than the hardware itself, or the applications being released for it, that's a problem.

What's more, as "ENN" sort of pointed out, the space requirements for this kind of thing seem to be substantial.

On top of it, there have been many fads that have had people looking like fools and having fun doing so for a while. Truthfully I think people spazzing out with motion controls is kind of over with, and it's on the verge of going the way of things like the Hula Hoop. :)

Have you been searching around online for them?

Law of Demand: As price goes down, ceteris paribus, than quantity demanded goes up!

Ok.

Where did they find the time machine to consult the adults from the 24th century?

And seeing as it's a little ways in the future, and the consoles are still being sold at their current prices, yeah, I could see them wanting the prices lowered.

"Cowen surveyed 2,301 adults". That one seems silly to me.

OT: It probably doesn't matter that much, almost anybody who wanted the console already has it. It's been what, 3 or 4 years?

SaturdayS:
My survey says that they should give me systems and games for free.

LOL Yeah sounds good!

OT: By now, the people who don't have a console are probably the ones who couldn't afford it to begin with, so obviously they are going to want lower prices!

Hmmm. Now let me think. Hands up all this who wants things fek cheap? Well bugga me with a cucumber. Is that everyone? Whood had thunk it?

This is hilarious.

Was the independent research group...gamers, aged 8 to 80/years old, in every country on the planet?

"Yeah...it would be cool, if, like, it didn't cost as much. We think it should cost less."

Actually, regarding the comment wondering if there are people who STILL don't have one at this point because of cost reasons, that would be me. I have been too poor to buy any of the current-generation consoles since they came out, and if there WAS a significant (say, 70$ or more) price drop, I'd probably go out and get one. I've been primarily interested in the PS3, and for the first couple of years it seemed like I might as well wait anyway, so they could actually make some games for the bloody thing. I'm still waiting for that new team ICO game...and a price drop. 'Cause it would be cool, if, like, it didn't cost as much.

FieryTrainwreck:
Survey says: people are fucking poor because our global economy has been exposed (which is different, and far worse, than a simple recession), so the distributors of entertainment products should wise up and realize they don't deserve untold millions for nonessential contributions to society.

What's great about your post is that it's smart and I read it in Farnsworth's voice.

Okay, so I have a Xbox 360, I'd like to have a PS3. However, since I already have one the other offers little incentive for me to invest (my PC can also hold her own). A price drop would be the tipping point, but only if the cuts were substantial enough to justify two systems with a largely shared library of games that I'm interested in playing.

I'm also still sore about the loss of backward compatibility, which means the system has significantly less to offer me since I still purchase PS2 games and intend on buying a CRT(last one died which is why I went HD in the first place) at some point so that I can enjoy them.

Asuka Soryu:

Azaraxzealot:

Greg Tito:
"We believe that the hardware manufacturers have left unit sales on the table by not reducing price points from $199 to $179 and $299 to $249 for the applicable consoles, and that doing so would have driven a more significant boost to hardware sales than the release (for Microsoft and Sony) of new motion-sensing peripherals.":P

umm... since the 360 is already being sold for less than the sum of its parts (its what my videogame design professor told me), i would assume selling it even cheaper is a bad move

but i dont know about he PS3, maybe it should be cheaper :P

lol No. The PS3 was costing Sony money when it was 600$.

However the cost of parts has also dropped in the meantime - Sony started making a profit on PS3 sales earlier this year. Microsoft has been making a profit on XBox 360 sales since late 2006.

Grygor:

Asuka Soryu:

Azaraxzealot:

umm... since the 360 is already being sold for less than the sum of its parts (its what my videogame design professor told me), i would assume selling it even cheaper is a bad move

but i dont know about he PS3, maybe it should be cheaper :P

lol No. The PS3 was costing Sony money when it was 600$.

However the cost of parts has also dropped in the meantime - Sony started making a profit on PS3 sales earlier this year. Microsoft has been making a profit on XBox 360 sales since late 2006.

Umm, I said 'was', as in the past tense.
IE, back when PS3 was released and 600$ a pop.

Considering that previous price cuts have only had a marginal effect on sales, what makes these people think that further price cuts will result in anything other than a momentary boost?

Ultimately, what sells the hardware is the software. If platform owners want to attract new users, they need to produce compelling software that would be of interest to them. It's not easy, but that is the only surefire way of picking up sales momentum.

 

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