Enterbrain: PS3 will lead Wii by Q4 2007

Japanese newspaper cites study by <i>Famitsu</i> publisher as saying Sony's next-gen console will triumph in the end.


At the 2006 Tokyo Game Show, Sony announced that it was dropping the price of its lower-end-model PlayStation 3 in Japan. The drop will see the 20GB version of the next-gen console costing 49,980 yen (about $429) when it goes on sale in Japan November 11.

Following the announcement, analysts in North America--where the 20GB PS3 will still cost $499--were doubtful. UBS' Mike Wallace went as far as to call the move "a questionable business decision and a sign of weakness" on the part of Sony.

However, it appears that such price drops may only be the beginning. Over the weekend, the Nihon Keizai Shimbun newspaper cited a study by Enterbrain Inc., publisher of Famitsu magazine, as expecting "further price reductions" and a greatly expanded software catalog for the PS3 by the 2007 holiday season.

As a result, Enterbrain predicted that the PS3 will outsell its biggest next-gen rival in Japan, the Nintendo Wii, by the end of next year. However, in the near term, the company believes that the Wii will win out. It predicts that worldwide PS3 sales through the end of March will total 4.13 million units, while the Wii will move 5.47 million units during the same period.

Despite the delayed PS3 launch in Europe, Sony has a stated goal of shipping--not selling--6 million PS3s by the end of March 2007. Nintendo aims to ship 6 million Wiis in 2006 alone, and recent reports indicate it looks likely to surpass its target.

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