With the next iteration of Nintendo's Wii expected to launch in the next couple months, the question that everyone is already asking is when the next Xbox and PlayStation products will hit the shelves.GameStop CEO Paul Raines believes that you will see one of them in 2013, but not both.
His sentiments ring true to much of what the speculation has been up to this point. Although Raines didn't specifically say which console he thinks will launch first, all signs are pointing to an Xbox 720 launch in 2013, with the PS4 likely to follow in 2014. There is a slight chance that it might not even come out until 2015.
Raines no doubt has an inside track to both companies and their retail strategies, giving him a uniquely comprehensive look at what to expect in the next couple years.
If you don't believe that he has pull in the industry, you're wrong. In an interview with The Verge, he noted that GameStop customer feedback is being used to help mold the next generation of consoles. For example, he spoke with Nintendo of America president Reggie Fils-Aime about what users were saying they want from the Wii U.
Obviously, GameStop is facing a rough patch right now. There hasn't been a truly new home console launch since 2006, meaning that customers are just buying software and they are increasingly doing it digitally.
Over the next couple years, though, GameStop has a shot at redefining its position in the market and proving that it will play a meaningful role in the world of Wii U, PS4, and Xbox 720. How it proves that remains to be seen.