For far too many years now Windows laptops have been catering to the sub $500 crowd, practically ceding the high end market to Apple. Of course the Alienware’s of the world have continued to pump out impressive gaming notebooks, but mainstream users were all too often deciding between a cheap PC, or a more expensive Macbook. Ultrabooks have done a great job of capturing back consumer mindshare, and according to NPD, have helped keep the $700-$900 PC price bracket from eroding away completely. They also noted that the $900+ price point managed to grow a whopping 39 percent from last year.
If it weren't for stereotypes, we'd say diehard gamers unplugged for a week of romancing and lovemaking to celebrate Valentine's Day last month, which would explain why NPD Group noted such a sharp decline in videogame sales in February. We don't condone stereotypes, but let's get real, February was just a crummy month for game sales and it had nothing to do with there being a day for lovers.
January was a slow month overall for videogame hardware and software, with combined sales (including accessories) dropping from $1.14 billion in January 2011 to 750.6 million, a 34 percent year-over-year slide, according to data released by market research firm NPD Group. Be that as it may, Microsoft's Xbox 360 console maintained its lead in the U.S. console market for its 13th straight month.
The latest figures from NPD DisplaySearch, previously just DisplaySearch (renamed 'NPD DisplaySearch' by its parent company, The NPD Group), suggests 3D adoption is more about price than available content. To wit, NPD DisplaySearch calculated 6.6 million 3D LCD TV panel shipments in the third quarter of 2011, accounting for 27 percent growth from last quarter, and it's because prices have come down.
Battlefield 3 topped the videogame sales chart in October and helped nudge overall sales of game related software up 1 percent in the United States, according to data from market research firm NPD Group, the Associated Press reports. That's not much of a gain, but there are several factors at play, one of which is the way NPD collects its data.
NBA Commissioner David Stern, Executive Director of the National Basketball Player's Union Billy Hunter, and everyone else entrenched in negotiations with the NBA's next collective bargaining agreement should take note. After a lockout that lasted 136 days, the NFL approved a new deal and saved football's season, ensuring fan fallout would be kept to a minimum. As a result, Madden NFL 12 shot to the top of The NPD Group's list of best selling videogames in the month of September.
At the rate the gaming population is growing among kids ages 2-17, it won't be long before there will be more child and teen gamers than there are children and teens. Wait, that can't be right. But what is right, according to The NPD Group, is that the population growth of kids ages 2-17 increased 1.54 percent in the U.S. since 2009, while the gaming population of that same age group grew 12.68 percent.
Not even the completion of a game 14 years in the making was enough to stop both console and PC videogame sales from slipping in June. According to market research firm NPD Group, retail sales of videogame hardware, software, and accessories fell to $995 million in June 2011, down 10 percent from one year prior. Sales of just software tumbled 12 percent to $469.5 million, or 10 percent to $508.9 million when including PC games.
Diehard Windows PC users, and Maximum PC readers in particular, aren't known for being shy in sharing their disdain for the evil empire known as Apple. Reasons are many: misleading advertisements, overpriced gear (the so-called 'Apple tax'), proprietary architecture, snooty iPhone owners, and the list goes on. Naturally, this contempt extends over to the iPad by those who wish bad things on Apple, which some consider the anti-PC. No keyboard? Oversized iPod touch? iTunes? Whatever your reason(s), it's fine if you choose to hate on the iPad, just don't blame Apple's tablet for weakening the PC market.
Content owners tend to speak frequently about the huge problem that p2p donwloads have caused for their businesses. A recent recording industry report said the music business would "struggle to survive unless we address the fundamental problem of piracy." A new report from NPD group, however, lets us all know how big of a problem piracy really is. As it turns out, only 9% of American internet users are pirates.