Let me preface by providing a specific definition of the two types of companies I am interested in.
Consultants: Software companies that generally provide their services on an hourly basis to create software that the end user will spec out to their internal specifications, the end user will also typically own the end product ie: Source
Houses: Software companies that generally receive most of their revenue through selling a specific product (ie: POS system, Game, Widget). The company itself will typically own the source code it develops.
Obviously I understand that the above definitions sometimes aren't so simple but I feel the point stands. What I am interested in knowing is (subjectively) which of the two types of software companies described above is more successful/profitable.
My gut tells me that a 'consulting company' is essentially selling a commodity that will always be driven by price, whereas a 'software house' owns a specific bit of intellectual property that has fixed costs and ideally a recurring revenue from its product range. It also owns tangible assets in its source code and possibly goodwill.
Could anyone please be kind enough to point me in a direction where I could research these thoughts further or possibly provide some ideas of their own?