Over the past couple of weeks, several publishers have released their quarterly earnings reports: among them, Electronic Arts, Ubisoft and THQ. Apart from a title slipping its ship date from one quarter to the next, there were few surprises to be found...except for the fact that of the three publishers listed above, two of them declared that the lion's share of their console revenues had been derived from the third-place platform: Playstation 3.
For an answer, we turned to Wedbush Morgan analyst and The Who's number one fan Michael Pachter. Here's what he had to say in our email exchange:
"Two things are at work. First, the way deferred revenue works: EA recognizes revenue on Xbox 360 over six months following the sale, but does NOT do so for PS3. So sales of Xbox 360 games during the last two quarters (Battlefield: Bad Company and Army of Two) are rolling through till December, while sales of PS3 games are booked when sold. Second, some of EA's sales are skewed in Europe, where UEFA Euro 2008 and Battlefield probably sold a little better on PS3, and with Rock Band launching in Europe this year (also skewed PS3). Ubisoft was because of Haze, which was a PS3 exclusive.
I don't think a single quarter represents a trend. EA won't be that way when Madden shows up and when the deferral starts to lap itself."