PS4 is clear leader in media coverage despite Switch hype - ICO

According to ICO Partners, Switch is seeing around 40% of the coverage that Sony's console gets on a weekly basis

Nintendo Switch seems to be on everyone's lips these days, and indeed with a big launch performance and positively glowing reviews for launch title The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, it's no surprise that Nintendo's new hardware is getting a fair amount of digital (and physical) ink. The way Nintendo handled its Switch reveal went a long ways towards helping the company get more media coverage, said Thomas Bidaux in his newest ICO Partners report.

"The Nintendo Switch [reveal] being in January, outside of any events, and being quite close to the actual launch, really paid off in my opinion for Nintendo," Bidaux noted while pointing out that the Switch in-depth reveal had significantly more coverage than either the PS4 Pro, PlayStation VR or the Project Scorpio announcements.

That being said, Bidaux explained that it's "essential to understand Nintendo is coming from in terms of their console media coverage." The Wii U's monthly media coverage has been very subdued, only hitting 10,000 articles once, and so from that perspective, the Switch is off to a fabulous start.

"A lot of that coverage is thanks to the January in-depth reveal that got really good coverage, and the momentum of the launch, but for a console with such a limited line-up, it seems that there is a significant interest for the console, outside of just the launch," Bidaux continued. "If the average weekly coverage stays around 4,000 articles/week, that puts it a bit above half of the Xbox One weekly average and at 40% of the PlayStation 4 weekly average, this would be an excellent foundation for Nintendo to build on."

As for Microsoft and Sony, the PS4 continues to outshine the Xbox One, and in fact, Bidaux said that this gap appears to be widening.

"As we mentioned many times before, the PlayStation 4 is the clear leader when it coming to console media coverage, and this is a constant. Even when looking at the weekly coverage volumes, since January 2015, only once did the Xbox One secure more coverage than the PlayStation 4. It was the week of the gamescom 2015, where Microsoft held a press conference and Sony did not," he explained.

"Microsoft doesn't seem to be learning from Sony when it comes to mak[ing] big announcements outside of major industry events. Or even outside of E3. That dependence [on] E3 seems like a very risky strategy. Yes, E3 is still clearly the most important event of the year when it comes to coverage of the video games industry, but at the moment, Microsoft is not learning how to also do announcement[s] at other times. Sony's September event drove coverage to the level of their E3 weekly coverage, and when it comes to monthly coverage, it was their best month since we started tracking the articles mentioning the PlayStation 4. The Xbox One's best month was June and E3."

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Latest comments (2)

Jim Webb Executive Editor/Community Director, E-mpire Ltd. Co.4 years ago
This seems to have been the case for the past decade. Even during the Wii era, PS3 still garnered more press coverage on during the average week.

This is expected when there are more media outlets that focus on Sony products than Nintendo. This fluctuates, obviously, during launches or major events/news releases which is certainly represented in these charts.
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Thomas Bidaux CEO, ICO Partners4 years ago
@Jim Webb: The volume of titles have a huge impact on the volume of media coverage. This gives more stories to write at the end of the day.
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