Research firm NPD has released its monthly data for video game sales. The industry continues to face consumer preferences for using tablets and smartphones instead of consoles as platforms. And the number of inexpensive games that can be download from app stores has risen. Some of the most popular sources of these games are free.
This movement has pressured both console makers Microsoft Corp. (NASDAQ: MSFT) and Sony Corp. (NYSE: SNE) and has eroded revenue at game creators and marketers, particularly Electronic Arts Inc. (NASDAQ: EA).
The software charts saw an overall year-on-year decline in unit sales of 30% compared to February 2012, though there were a similar number of new releases. Total video game software sales at retail amounted to $352 million in February 2013, compared to $484 million the previous year.
Shares of Electronic Arts closed yesterday at $19.34, in a 52-week range of $10.77 to $19.51.
Douglas A. McIntyre