Longer length of previous generation was also beneficial.
Fresh off the reveal of its Xbox One console, which will be competing with Nintendo’s Wii U and Sony’s PlayStation 4, Microsoft Europe’s VP of Interactive Entertainment Chris Lewis stated to GamesIndustry International that there’s still plenty of growth in the console market, despite the success of the previous generation.
“This generation 7 that we’re in right now, it’s 50 per cent bigger than generation 6 and I think double the size of generation 5. Our anticipation is that generation 8 will be at least 30 per cent bigger still.”
He also felt that the prolonged length of the last generation was a good thing. “There is a strong trajectory there. I think people liked the length of the generation. Our partners certainly did. Retail loved the length of the generation, at least in terms of the attach and the additional services and content they can attach. Our developers like the longevity of the platform because they get better at bringing and optimising content for that platform.”
Prior to the PS3 and Xbox 360, consoles were going through a 4 year cycle of refreshes.