The BBC has up an article looking at the dwindling opportunities for profit on games in the coming years. Soaring prices for game development, the increasingly-entrenched segmentation of the marketplace, and overwhelming emphasis on sequels means that it's looking increasingly dire for game development houses. While the success of the DS means that there's a wide market for games on that platform (witness Square/Enix's movement of the Dragon Quest franchise), the phasing out of the PS2 means that for the moment there is no 'leading platform' for game creation. The article talks about how the various game companies are responding to this challenge, as in Microsoft's reliance on exclusive deals and Sony's absorption of development houses into their infrastructure.
wjamesau writes "After 2006's rollercoast stock performance and amid criticism that the giant publisher had become over-reliant on sequels, Electronic Arts' CEO Larry Probst has just stepped down. GigaGamez reports, and wonders if this means other publishers will feel pressure to develop more original IP."
SpiceMonkey writes "AMD stock was up 6.74% on Monday on rumors that AMD is a prime buyout target. After their purchase of ATI, they've been pressed to maintain their aggressive policy of chip production increases. As a result, the AMD message board on Yahoo! is full of speculation on who has their eyes on the company. Many folks there think that IBM is the right buyer for the company. There's no firm word that AMD is even being considered for purchase, but it's certainly and interesting prospect."
cshamis writes "T-Mobile has recently changed their policies and now tell their customers with appropriate data plans and with Java-Micro-App-capable T-Mobile phones: no third-party network applications. You can, of course, still use their incredibly clunky and crippled built-in WAP browsers, but GoogleMaps and OperaMini are left high and dry. Would anyone care to speculate if this move is likely to retain or repel customers?"
njkid1, as he does from time to time, passed us a link to a story on the GameDaily site. Today they're discussing the January NPD numbers for the games industry. In short, they're terrific. Software sales totaled $549 million for the month, up a staggering 53 percent over last year. Hardware sales were brisk as well, with the Wii selling around 436,000 units. Trailing behind were Microsoft and Sony, with 360 hitting 294,000 units sold and the PS3 selling 244,000 units. January had an extra week, which resulted in 'inflated' sales, but even after normalizing the data things were tremendous for the games industry in a month where there's normally a post-holiday slump.