Magazine ABCs July-Dec 2006: Computing

The sector continues to mirror the activity in the console industry, with the dominant publisher, Future, launching the Official Xbox 360 Magazine to capitalise on a new product launch.

Meanwhile, Official PlayStation 2's year-on-year decline of 42.2 per cent is indicative of a console in its twilight years. Interest will inevitably be reignited with the launch of the PlayStation 3 in March.

The Official Nintendo Magazine registered strong period-on-period growth, fuelled by the launch of the DS Lite and Wii products.

Meanwhile, the general desktop titles have suffered, with PC Pro and Computer Shopper among the casualties. The market leader in this sector, Computeractive, has also fallen year on year. The only exception among the big players appears to be MacFormat, whose circulation has increased by 14.1 per cent to 19,613.

Verdict The console market will be reignited by yet another product launch when PlayStation 3 finally sees the light of day. Elsewhere, general desktop titles will continue to lose out to those covering specialist areas of computing, which will retain small reader bases, but grow over time.

TITLE PUBLISHER Total ABC Period-on- Year-on-
period year
% change % change
Computeractive VNU 216,031 n/a -7.3
PC Pro Dennis 90,407 n/a -11.4
Computer Shopper Dennis 83,390 n/a -10.7
Official PlayStation 2 Future 76,351 -23.7 -42.2
Personal Computer World VNU 72,008 n/a -5.3
Official Xbox 360 Future 56,057 31.3 n/a
Games Master Future 53,904 1.0 -2.9
PC Gamer Future 43,620 -3.7 -10.4
Official Nintendo
Magazine Future 42,960 20.8 14.3
Microsoft Windows XP Future 36,437 n/a -14.4
Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations, July-December 2006.

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