Somehow it seems to me that all of the major palyers of the consol game business are struggeling. Microsoft's Xbox continues its long history of losing money (cca. 2 billion USD per year). Even in this year Xbox One is selling at only half the rate of Sony's Playsation 4 (Xbox One sales at under cca. 70% of Playstation 4).
Last year Nintendo went through a sales crash. In this year Ninendo does not hold high hope for Wii U sales (instead of sales of 9 million Wii U consoles they expect to sell only 2.8 million = -69% drop!!)
If this was not enough for us, last year EA Sports and Tiger Woods ended their partnership. So the Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 (was released in March 2013 on PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360) is the final Tiger Woods game. At the same time EA will keep on to work with the PGA Tour exclusively. EA is probably will cooperate with HB Studio's The Golf Club software.
Why am I telling all of this?
To my great surprise Callaway Golf announced that they will sponsore Nintendo's Mario Golf World Tour game (it runs on Nintendo 3DS). They together will host a series of special in-game tournaments starting May 22. To activate the tournaments players will have to use the SpotPass feature. In addition to this players who will participate they will receive an in-game digital Callaway Golf items which enhance stats when used by Mii characters.
Why is Callaway Golf entering into this field? What is their business objective/goal? How relevant is Nintendo 3DS to those people whom Callaway Golf would like to attract as new golfers or other prospects as part of their rejuvenation initiative (I assume this is their goal).
First I thought Callaway Golf was fooled or this project will not successed at all…But! As I started to read the report of the Entertainment Software Association, I found couple of interesting findings that can justify Callaway Golf's decision:
- 58% of Americans play video games;
- average age of game player is 30 (!) (65% under age 35);
- avarage age of game purchaser is: 35;
- 26% of the game players prefer sports online games.
- 68% of the players prefer to play on their console.
I think it is an interesting and untapped area. Callaway Golf has a good chance to create a so-called right time experience with this sponsorship (similar to last year's partnership with Uber during the US Open).
It is a pity that Windows Mobile penetration is so small, otherwise I would suggest to cooperate with Xbox. Although we cannot wear our mobiles (yet), but they are always with us. Thus playing via mobile could replace gaming consoles.