The NPD group just released its latest report for the month of December which also included the top selling games for the entire year. This time around the report came with a new disclaimer stating.
“provides both online and retail sales results for new physical video game products, as well as a subset of full-game digital downloads from participating publishers in NPD’s digital panel. It is not intended to cover total market/total consumer spend.”
If the recent report is any indication it seems that total video game sales which consist of hardware, software, and accessories went down by 15 percent year-over-year from $3.2 billion to $2.7 billion in the US during December.Hardware was by far the biggest loser as it went down from $1.24 billion in December 2015 to $994.9 million in December 2016. This is a staggering decrease and according to NPD analyst Sam Naji this was due to the disappointing sales performances of both the Xbox One S and the PS4 Pro
[T]he release of the Xbox One S and the PlayStation 4 Pro did not generate dollar-spending growth,” said Sam Naji. “Although the combined [average retail price] for the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 systems decreased by 15 percent, consumers bought seven percent fewer units.”
Even though Sony has ceased commenting on NPD sales reports we already know that the console came out on top when compared to the Xbox One , with the Uncharted 4 bundle selling like hotcakes. Microsoft had also hinted previously that they had a pretty good December and that they actually performed better than their counterparts in the latter half of 2016. this time around we learned that the Xbox One saw a 10% increase in number of units sold when compared with the statistics of last year.
2016 was indeed a tough year for hardware spending and the stats reflect that , according to analyst Sam Naji
“The category was down 24 percent as unit sales and the average retail price for consoles declined compared to 2015”
So it seems that most of the reports we were seeing recently were correct and the console market is indeed headed towards a decline. A big reason for that is the emergence of smartphones and free to play games like League Of legends which are eating into a sizable chunk of the console market.Let us know your opinions about the recent decline in hardware sales by commenting in the comments section below.