In its latest report, analysts at Arcadia Investment Corp are predicting a 50% increase of hardware sales in November 2006 compared to the previous year - attributed not only to next-gen launches, but similar strong sales of existing consoles, accompanied by a 20% rise in software.
Following a solid month of sales topped off by what Arcadia calls a "very strong" Black Friday holiday shopping day, the top hardware seller in Arcadia's estimates, obtained directly by Gamasutra after an unauthorized leak of the predictions earlier in the week, wasn't any of the big three next-gen consoles. Instead, it was the Nintendo DS, which the company estimates moved 600k units during the month. This number would put DS sales at 4.5 million by the end of the year and sales of 8.3 million overall.
Nintendo's legacy handheld, the Game Boy Advance also saw a strong November, with a predicted 500k in sales as the least expensive system on the market, and a strong lineup of software. Arcadia estimates that, combined with strong December sales, the GBA will move 3.1 million units for the year, totaling 35 million.
The Xbox 360 also saw a "robust sequential ramp" over November with a predicted 500k in sales, culminating with 200K of those sales during the week of Black Friday alone, driven both by the release of Gears of War
, as well as what retailers are saying was bad press over the availability of the PS3 causing many to choose Microsoft's console.
As for the PS3 itself, Arcadia believes only 150K launch units were delivered in the end, with the firm estimating 100K more deliveries each week throughout the end of 2006, totaling somewhere between 500-600K for the year. On the other hand, a lower pricepoint and the release of Guitar Hero 2
has driven sales up of the PS2, with sales of an estimated 500K for the month. PSP sales were also strong thanks to a $169 retail outlet deal, with an estimated 350K in sales.
Nintendo's Wii achieved an estimated 450-500K sales for November, some 400K in the first launch week alone. Based on third party reports of Nintendo prioritizing game manufacturing there has been some concern about third party software delivery, but nevertheless Arcadia estimates Nintendo is well on track to deliver 1.3 million units by year end.
However, it must be re-iterated that Arcadia's predictions are simply estimates, like Lazard Capital's released earlier today
, and full information on November video game sales in North American will debut later on Thursday via NPD.