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Taming the Waves Games Console Life Cycles and Platform Competition
The long established model of cyclical technology “generations” has given the games console industry its traditional wave characteristic, and has presented a major planning challenge for billion-dollar platform investors as well as games publishers and developers. So far the latest cycle, featuring Sony’s PS3, Microsoft’s Xbox 360 and Nintendo’s Wii platforms, has been no exception, but there are signs that the volatility in the industry may begin to ease as life cycles become extended and consoles add further non-gaming functionalities such as online video and television services. This report discusses the current state of the global TV games console market, the performance of the three major platforms, and assesses their prospects for future growth.