Despite launching later than Microsoft's Xbox 360, Sony's PS3 has finally out-shipped it just as we're all talking PS4 - so claims a a 67-page report that costs $4,500 and comes from reputable report makers IDC.
The report, entitled "Worldwide Video Game and Entertainment Console Hardware and Packaged Software 2012–2016 Forecast" also points out that:
"Demand for packaged disc sales will clearly fall as digital distribution ramps up and eighth-generation consoles take center stage. This means that console hardware will become a more important aspect of the market from a brick-and-mortar retail perspective in particular. It appears that hardware ASPs will hold up fairly well through 2016, however, so the decline in disc-based revenue doesn't mean that game consoles' value position will be cannibalized by competing platforms anytime soon."
GamesIndustryInternational, however, also points out that the report indicates:
"Sony's PS3 managed to surpass the number of Xbox 360s shipped
worldwide (about 77 million vs. 76 million), despite the PS3 launching a year later. While many hardcore gamers are now waiting for the next-generation systens from Sony and Microsoft, IDC noted that Nintendo will still "find an audience" with Wii U, reaching global bundle shipments of 50 million by year-end 2016."
The emphasis is ours however. The difference between 'shipped' and 'sold to consumers' is always a sparking point for well reasoned discussion between fans of both consoles.
Gentlemen and Gentlewomen... start your arugumengines...