Industry analyst Michael Pachter believes that the PS4 will be the best selling console of this generation. Pachter predicts that the PS4 will sell 120 million or 130 million units, while the Xbox One will sell 100 million to 110 million and the Wii U around 20 million.
"The console installed base is as big as it's ever going to get. [This] generation is not going to be bigger than the last generation. We're going to be about the same," said Pachter at video games conference DICE Europe.
"The Wii U is going to sell 20 million units compared to 100 million for the Wii. The PlayStation 4 is going to sell 120 million or 130 million - that's great. The Xbox One will sell 100 million to 110 million - that's great. Add it all together and it's 260 million units, maybe, and the last cycle was 270 million."
The analyst also says that this will be "the last real console cycle." What Pachter means by this is that the next generation consoles will sell a lot less than the current generation, with Pacther mentioning the Nintendo DS and Nintendo 3DS as an example. Eventually, consoles will be replaced by TV Boxes, smartphones or other devices that allow the user to play a certain game without the need to purchase a console, or so Pachter believes.
"What happens when you lower the entry so nobody has to buy a console? If Activision sells 20 million copies of Call of Duty to people with a console, how many people would buy it who don't have a console? I'm guessing 20 million more. To make it easier for the Europeans in the room, how many more people would play FIFA if a console wasn't required? Another 20 million.
"They're not going to buy a console for one game, and I'd say that's true of every single [console] game made. There's a market of probably several million people who would never buy a console to play the game, but would absolutely buy the game."
Do you think the console industry will evolve as Pachter predicts? Share your opinion in the comments below.