Earlier this week, Satoru Iwata, Nintendo's CEO, pointed out the perils of maintaining the status quo in console cycles. According to Iwata, the current state of the industry where hardware is replaced by its successor in just four years is a blunder that Nintendo will not commit.
Instead, Iwata argued that new consoles should be replaced when a major shift in entertainment arrives or all avenues for innovation have been exhausted.
While I can see where Iwata is coming from, I think he misses an important point. Sure, new technologies should govern the arrival of new consoles, but what about the business implications of a 10-year console cycle? It may work for Nintendo, which has two successful hardware options on the market and does well with its first-party software, but what about Sony and Microsoft?
Sad as it is, Iwata is dreaming. From the perspective of hardware manufacturers, new console releases mean a jump in revenue and unique opportunities for growth.… Read more