EA CFO: Next generation isn’t needed any time soon

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According to EA’s Chief Financial Officer, Eric Brown, the latest generation of consoles released to the public has changed the dynamic of the industry and the usual cycle between console generations. While gamers are usually in a comfort zone of expecting a new ring of consoles every five to six years, Brown believes that that is no longer necessary.

Speaking at the Goldman Sachs Technology and Internet conference, Brown provided his own reasoning as to why the next generation of consoles won’t be needed any time soon and how much he believes the development cost will bear down on developers to the point of it not really being worth it.

“Today we have two of the three consoles that operate in full high-definition and are running games at 60 frames-per-second. If you step back and say if it’s a multi-billion capital dollar investment for the next generation, the question I would ask is if you were to produce that then what would you display it on? There’s really nothing in terms of broadly available consumer viewing technology other than 1080p flat panel televisions and so you could upgrade in theory but you wouldn’t get the obvious graphical benefit that we saw really drove the sharp transitions in the prior cycle.”

When I think about it, I have to completely agree with the logic behind his statements. Currently, the technology is to a point where it’s going to be harder to reach the next level of entertainment within the industry. Considering how far the consoles are already pushing current technology, it’s hard to believe that the next slate of consoles from Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo could really be that much of an upgrade on an overall level.

Feel free to check out everything Brown had to say at Gi.biz.

Readers Comments (22)

  1. lol is this good or bad news? I think it’s actually pretty good. I won’t have to dish out 600+ dollars for a console anytime soon.

  2. I would be quite happy if Sony, Microsoft and Nintendo didn’t release another console for about 7-8 years. I’ve got basically everything I want right now.

  3. 10 year cycle. . . . .Awesome.

    And that’s the thing: we are getting so much from our console (PS3 rocks!) and any other new feature can be implemented via system update. The fact that every console is internet enabled also contributed to change the so called landscape for videogames.

    Games are starting to really show the PS3 graphical power and there is still room for improvement. The launch of Arc (And Natal) is something really different too: we’ll se a whole new side for the consoles we have right now; not needing to uprgade anytime soon.

    At least, alll of this applies to ps3 and 360. I don’t see the wii going without an hd uprgade sometime soon xD

  4. I believe they are talking about the ps3 here because the 360 can’t even produce a native 1080p quality resolution, they can get close but ps3 is the only one that can get true 1080p.
    Anyways, I’m glad consoles may not need a 5 year life cycle because I would hate buying another console that would cost over 600 dollars.

  5. I completely agree, there isnt much to improve to make it so next gen. Consles need to let the rest of the entertainment market catch up before new innovitative consles can be created.

  6. Agreed. This generation still has a long road to go. The Cell is barely being tapped.

  7. I think as we go on and technology improves, consoles last longer, therefore the gen lasts longer. We won’t need new consoles for awhile. And yes, that includes the 360, even the Wii.

  8. “I think as we go on and technology improves, consoles last longer, therefore the gen lasts longer. We won’t need new consoles for awhile. And yes, that includes the 360, even the Wii.”

    Don’t forget the Price gets higher =/

  9. games arnt at ther full potential in consoles yet especially in the ps3. motion controller is coming soon and these are obviously ment to last a long time anyway.

  10. Thats fine with me. Saves me $600 that I can spend on games. Will give devs more time with these consoles to master and become more efficient, not having to spend as much on gave development, make more money back cause more people will have these consoles. Seems like a win win for everyone.

  11. I am happy where we are with the consoles right now, although I wouldn’t mind seeing the next gen in 2012 or something.

  12. isnt this uhh a bit…..obvious? the PS3 and 360 seems to be holding out pretty well…id expect another few years (for the PS3 at least)

  13. Even I don’t want any console’s right now, Infact MS should pull out 360 from the market and keep Wii for kids and woman, PS3 i’ve got everything i need (or atleast on the horizon).

  14. As for wii, it really needs an update (more power, better internet and HD) so I want a wii 2 to be released. As for M$ and their X-Box 360 they will probably sell in a lesser rate than before mainly because of the PS3 finally showing its’ power and all the problems with X-Box 360 will stay and they might do the same mistakes as last gen. Basically rushing with making an unrelyable console. I hope M$ won’t do it cause if they do then Sony will kinda be forced to release PS4 and this generation will come to an end (ofc the PS3 will still remain in sale). So in conslusion I only want the wii enter next gen right now and to be at least as good as X-Box 360 (minus the issues).

  15. @ Sir Richard
    I don’t think we need Wii HD too, nintendo would not want to compete with PS3 when the arc releases, as ps3 will be what everyone visualize wii HD to be. so NINTENDO has to come up with something new again as they did with Wii in 2006

  16. @Taus90 Seeing as how alot of people think the Wii’s responses arent that great, its not like they are going to go out and buy the ps3 as well as the ARC, the ARC is probably going to attract only the interested ps3 owners and that is about it.

  17. @ Moocows111111
    but still wii owner who are waiting on fence to upgrade to HD version, PS3 will be most attractive, and there is hell lot of Wii owners, and add to that a great line up of hardcore games, and followed by lots of casual games at launch. so i think its a win win situation here.

  18. Not really Taus, The WII owners are usually family time people, mostly either little kids or older people like 40 or 50+ around those ages people don’t really care about HD, also besides, Buying a New Ps3 and Arc may be too Costly, and if they didn’t buy an xbox 360 or Ps3 now, why would they buy one when the ARC comes out? The Wii is already serving its purpose : to give fun and excitement to casual gamers.

  19. meh, i think Nintendo should just move on to a new system in GENERAL

    perhaps go back to making a regular console to match with the PS3 and 360? or is that too late

  20. @ Moocows 111111, completely in-sync with ur view, and it seems they will continue with the same hardware for few years more, while keep releasing Add-on’s, but i am sure they have Wii2 on papers or in development again the target audience will be casual gamers.

  21. Its good they don’t think that a next generation console is need anytime soon. The current generation of consoles have a lot of potential to last many more years and there are still a lot of great games coming out for them.

  22. good new, Yay no need to spend alot of money again buying a XBOX 720 or PlayStation 4.

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