Wedbush Morgan's Michael Pachter has told videogaming247 that his firm expects that PS3 outsold Xbox 360 in February, ahead of the release of NPD data on Thursday. PS3's lead over the Microsoft machine, Pachter reasoned, was due to continuing supply issues for Xbox 360.
His view is in contradiction to The simExchange's prediction that 360 had moved ahead of PS3 in February.
"We expect February U.S. retail video game console software sales data to be released after market close on Thursday, March 13. We forecast sales of $575 million, 27% compared to last year's $454 million. For purposes of comparison, The simExchange prediction market forecasts overall software sales of $592 million," he said.
"Our estimate reflects $485 million in sales contribution from new platforms (PS3, Wii, 360, PSP and DS) and current generation software sales of $90 million. We estimate sell-through of 300,000 Wii, 250,000 Xbox 360 and 260,000 PS3 consoles. For purposes of comparison, The simExchange prediction market forecasts 450,000 Wii, 285,000 Xbox 360 and 270,000 PS3
consoles sold in February. Our console sell-through forecasts reflect our belief that Wii, DS and Xbox 360 hardware continued to be supply constrained during the month. With the launch of several high-profile games in March, we expect supplies for the consoles to increase."
Pachter is predicting that 360 and PS3 will remain fairly closely matched in the US for the rest of this year, with PS3 pulling ahead as we move into 2009.