17 March 2011

NPD promises to track digital data following EA complaints

Publishing giant EA set their sights on monthly NPD data recently, blaming a lack of digital sales data for a “misrepresentation of the entire industry”.

Corporate communications executive Tiffany Steckler spoke to CNN on the issue, saying: “Using NPD data for video game sales is like measuring music sales and ignoring something called iTunes. We see NPD’s data as a misrepresentation of the entire industry.”

NPD’s response? Simple enough; they’ll start tracking digital data. NPD analyst Anita Frazier revealed to Games Industry that the group is “expanding the number of digital retailers we have relationships with in order to develop a digital POS (point of sale) service.”

“The goal is to provide our clients with a total POS games tracking service that incorporates the growing digital channel as well as the currently predominant physical format, and to deliver this at the same frequency as we currently do for new physical retail sales (monthly).”

This is important news for the digital industry, which can now have its figures tracked side-by-side with retail products. It was only a matter of time though, as Frazier adds: “It will become increasingly challenging for the financial community to create proper valuations of companies in the absence of an objective third-party source covering the entire market, and it will be harder for companies to manage their businesses and resources without visibility into all forms of distribution.”

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