The plight of Sony and Microsoft

Nintendo is crushing Microsoft and SonySony and Microsoft have been in a little bit of trouble lately. Despite huge development and marketing costs Sony and Microsoft have four flagship blunders between them.

Sony is watching as its Playstation brand is being destroyed by the poor sales of the Playstation 3 (PS3) and the handheld Playstation Portable (PSP). Just this last month Sony only sold 130,000 PS3s, while the competing Nintendo Wii sold 259,000 units.

And again, it’s important to note that the Nintendo sales were supply limited. In other words, they sold every Wii they made. But either way, 130,000 is just brutal. The Playstation 2 never had a month that bad that wasn’t limited by supply. Hell, the Playstation 2 still outsells the Playstation 3 by better than 2-1.

The PSP is also getting destroyed by Nintendo’s rival product the DS. The DS sold 508,000 units, while the PSP sold 180,000. These are just all around bad numbers for Sony, because unlike Nintendo, they sell their hardware at a loss and have to hope they make the money back on profits from selling software and movies.

Microsoft is in their own nightmare with Windows Vista and the Xbox 360. Although the Xbox 360 is doing well compared to the Playstation 3, it is still going to fall behind total sales of the Wii by the end of 2007 even with a year’s head start in the market. A distant 2nd place is certainly not what Microsoft expected in this generation of game machines.

As for Vista:

Responding to customer demand Dell has restarted selling new PCs with Windows XP installed on them.

The decision reverses a policy begun in January that meant Windows Vista was the only operating system available on almost all new home machines.

The change came after Dell’s feedback site was swamped with calls for the return of the venerable software.(Source: BBC)

It’s really hard to sugar coat that kind of press and bad sales numbers, but I’m sure Microsoft will try.

Other views: Kotaku, Dubious Quality, Slashdot

One Comment

  1. Ian

    Truth: I’d buy both a 360 and a PS3 if the price were right. I’d buy a PS3 over a 360 cause I’ve had a PSX and a PS2 and been happy with both (except that annoying thing with the PS2 where I have to perform surgery on it to adjust the lens position about once a year). I will not pay $500+ for a video game system when I have a few now that work perfectly well. When it drops below $300, you can bet I will purchase it. Until then, I’ll let all the games I want for it come out and drop in price as well.

    The DS beating the PSP is not at all surprising to me. The DS is much more of a kid friendly system. Kids play portable games more than adults and thats who the DS is aimed at. Sony’s idea of putting movies on the PSP is stupid. Why pay full price for a DVD to watch it only on a small screen when you could just get a normal one for full screen? And all the PSP does is play PSX games… which I can buy for like $5-10 now at any used game store and play them on a big screen. Also, the PSP costs just as much as the PS2 (or in the same ballpark, I forget). The PS2 is a superior system as far as the games it can play, it can play real DVDs, it has no battery life issue, etc. As a kid, I played my Gameboy when my parents watched TV. As an adult, I don’t have time to play a handheld video game system when I am not at home, and if I am at home, whats the point in choosing handheld over console/PC? MP3s? I can get a smaller mp3 player with longer battery life for much less money. Did Sony miss the whole NGage thing? PSP is just a Sony fan boy item.

    All hail the new old Nintendo overlords.

    I don’t know much personally about Vista. I’ve had one run in with it as my advisor just got it on his laptop. Installing a network printer with it was kind of a pain compared to XP. Also, just logging onto the network required you to go through a bunch of “Are you sure you want to do this, dumbass?” messages. Yeah its pretty looking I guess, but honestly I don’t use Windows so I can have a spiffy 3D clock on my desktop. That little one in the corner will do, I would prefer to not have to spend 1 GB of RAM on my OS. It seems much more AOL Generation user friendly than any previous windows. Its a shame cause I saw XP as a big improvement over all previous versions, but Vista just seems bloated and full of annoyances like the security checks. Might be good for your grandparents to use, but a knowledgable user might get frustrated.