The decline will narrow, but it will continue. This is Michael Pachter's prediction for the July NPD results, foreseeing a 22 percent downturn compared to the same month last year.
Said Pachter, " We think that stagnant sales will force the console manufacturers to consider a price cut." And they would have to, especially for Nintendo and Sony, if they want to meet their projected unit forecasts for their consoles. Microsoft, on the other hand, may most likely wait for the move of its competitors.
Despite narrowing the decline from June's 31 percent, this is by no means an indication that the Summer slump is over, according to Pachter. In fact, for hardware sales in July, he estimates 305,000 units sold for the Wii, 190,000 for the Xbox 360, and 135,000 for PS3. Put beside the numbers of hardware sales in July 2008, that's a 36 year-over-year unit decline.
As for the software, he says that he expects a 16 decrease in sales due to several factors, including "greater seasonality" in purchases for Wii titles, less catalog sales, and a more hesitant consumer.
To avert a major disaster, the only solution that Pachter can suggest for the industry now is to have those price cuts. He does, however, send out some positive vibes for the months of August and September, saying that those months should see a return in the upward trek of NPD results.
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