Two of digital distribution’s heavy hitters have weighed-in on NPD’s recent research into download services, and apparently do not agree with the firm’s conclusions.
“NPD’s numbers on digital don’t tend to have much reflection on reality,” said Impulse head, Brad Wardell. “As much as I would love digital distribution to take over the world, I can’t think of a single publisher (including ourselves) that sells even close to a majority of its units digitally.
“I am a big believer in the future of digital distribution but the numbers we typically hear from publishers is that it’s about a third (which is pretty darn good btw).”
Wardell has previous stated Impulse is in the number two position with 10 percent of digital sales across the board, with Steam at number one.
GamersGate, one of the first digital distribution sites launched, claimed NPD didn’t contact the company for input into its research.
“We did read the report and were actually quite surprised. We do not disclose our sales numbers and we were also not contacted during the research period of this study,” said CEO Theodore Bergquist.
“That being said, from our numbers and most importantly our conversations with the leading publishers in the industry, I know we are easily one of the top retailers.”
NPD’s report listed the top five distributors based on percentage of unit sales as Steam, Direct2Drive, Blizzard.com, EA.com and WorldofWarcraft.com, respectively.
The press release issued by NPD didn’t list the full top 20 for digital distribution, which the firm has said in the past it plans to keep certain information private, and only provide it to clients.