News Post

Relax OSers, you are still going to be able to physically own your games for some time to come -- at least if John Riccitiello, the CEO of Electronic Arts, has anything to say about it.

"Do I believe longer term that the disc will go away? Not any time soon," he said. "I think the disc can actually be a great starting point for a digital business, like an MMO, World of Warcraft, for instance. Pushing that off to the side for a minute, we make services, we donít make products, and I think the challenge I would have in answering the question the way you framed it is I donít think people want a streaming game service. I think they want their games to work. At times, that will be delivered best with streaming. At times, you should just download the game."

Riccitiello also mentions that while physical discs are still the future, downloading and streaming products have overtaken their physical disk counterparts as the top money maker for the company.

The real loser in this movement to digital copies as opposed to retail copies are physical disc stores like Gamestop, whose business models are on borrowed time it seems.

Member Comments
# 1 adembroski @ 01/12/11 10:11 PM
Gamestop should be the loser. They depend on the developers and publishers for their income, yet they shut them out of the 2nd hand game market. It's only fair that the publishers attempt to bypass them whenever possible.

What is unfortunate is the lower overhead (manufacturing overhead and labor costs) has not translated in the end-user savings. I believe gaming would benefit greatly from stronger impulse sales, but people don't spend $60 on impulse.

Either way, GameSpot is going to have to adjust their business model in order to cut the publishers back in on the 2nd hand market, or the Publishers are going to continue to do an end-run around them. Something's gotta give eventually, and it wont be the side who actually produces the product that'll blink first.
# 2 wildinkc @ 01/13/11 02:03 AM
I believe him in saying that discs are not going away anytime soon. It seems to me that some people forget that a lot of people out in the country or small towns can't get high speed internet with out shelling out a lot of money for it. Luckily I live in a small town where I still get the perks of having a big city nearby but I know people that are only ten minutes from me that they can't get cable or high speed internet at there house. Until that improves discs are not going anywhere anytime soon.

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