Analysts from Japanese media and research company Enterbrain have suggested that the Japanese video game market will peak this year and will begin to fall again in value by 2010.
After several years of falling sales at the end of the PlayStation 2 era, the introduction of new hardware formats -- in particular the Nintendo DS -- have seen the market begin to expand again.
According to recent data from Enterbrain
the Japanese market saw a 3.8 percent increase in combined hardware and software revenues in 2007, for a total value of ¥677 billion ($6.7bn).
However, the company predicts
that this figure will peak at ¥710.4 billion ($7.0bn) in 2008 and begin to fall to ¥671.1 billion ($6.7bn) by 2010, according to news website Japan Today.
This is primarily attributed to a fall in demand for new consoles, with the Nintendo DS already selling in lower qualities this year than in 2007 - though other handhelds such as Sony's PSP are doing significantly better in the short-term.
The Japanese online market, traditionally much smaller than either the West or neighboring Asian territories, is expected to expand over the same time period – reaching ¥320.5 billion ($3.2bn) by 2010. This would put a total market value for video gaming at ¥991.6 billion ($9.8bn).