A new report released by analyst group DFC Intelligence has predicted that sales in the handheld market will reach $10 billion by 2007, adding that "the DS has the potential to be the best-selling interactive entertainment platform ever."
DFC's new report, "The Market for Portable Video Games," looks at trends in handheld software, online gaming, and business models and sales expectations for game publishers throughout the next five years.
Though it has predicted that the DS could be the best selling platform ever, DFC also expects that Sony's own efforts with the PSP will put it in a solid position in the handheld marketplace. The report does add, though, that much of its status will depend on how much and what kind of focus Sony puts on the platform over the next few years.
Either way, says DFC analyst David Cole, "Under the right scenario, by 2011 the combined installed base of the DS and PSP could exceed that for the Nintendo Wii, Sony PlayStation 3 and Microsoft Xbox 360."
Beyond hardware, the report has also said that though Nintendo typically has dominated the handheld market through its own first-party creations specifically tailored for its own platforms, a great many opportunities exist for the third parties in this expanding market.
Specifically, DFC says publishers of casual games, as well as "high-end" PC genres like RPGs, MMOs, and turn-based strategy games stand to find great success in the portable sphere due to a greater number of older users adopting handheld systems.
Finally, the report says, currently console-focused publishers have "found it is possible to make over $100 million in revenue from a single PSP title based on the right franchise."