In a presentation at SXSW this weekend, industry analyst Michael Pachter gave his forecast for the next generation, picking Microsoft as a big winner; proving optimistic on Sony's behalf; and expressing doubst about Nintendo.
In a slide shared by Geoff Keighley, Pachter summarised his thoughts. Although Microsoft is yet to reveal its Xbox 360 successor, codenamed Durango, the analyst believes a couple of unconfirmed features will keep it at the top of the US console market.
"Microsoft wins the next generation. The TV tuner and Skype are killer apps," he said.
Meanwhile, the PlayStation 4 will do quite well, Pachter said, but Nintendo's on shakier ground.
"Sony thrives in the next generation. Still playing catch-up, but Gaikai and content are huge advantages," he said.
"Nintendo software still king but console hardware sales will be challenged. Handheld hardware sales will lose share to smartphones and tablets."
Pachter said we're unlikely to see any more publisher bankruptcies in the coming generation, but some companies may consolidate.
"The PC as gaming device will make a comeback", he added, which, given the upcoming launch of the first Steam box as well as the growing market for hardcore and indie games, seems pretty likely.