PS4, Xbox 720 will be digital-based - analyst

Retailers will be hurt by digital focus of next-gen consoles, says EEDAR analyst

EEDAR analyst Greg Short says the digital focus of next gen consoles will put a squeeze on high street retailers when they eventually arrive.

Speaking at GDC Europe, Short said the rapidly growing significance of digital distribution is being boosted by a surge in small development studios, which rely on such distribution methods for their smaller, lower budget titles.

The recent spout of big studio redundancies has spurred an increase in the number of these small download-only studios, said Short. This could contribute to a greater focus on digital content come the next console generation.

Despite these predictions, Short says retailers will be a "dominant force" for years to come, and will continue to play a major part in the industry, particularly educating the consumer (Short notes a huge proportion of consumers who learned of DLC for their games via in-store promotions).