A new report from American stats body NPD has thrown more doubt over the current market importance of digital games retail – specifically in the console market.
NPD reports that in a three-month period just six per cent of console owners downloaded content to their console. On PC and Mac this figure rises to 15 per cent. On smartphone it’s four per cent and on digital video players (such as internet-enabled Blu-ray players) it was two per cent.
75 per cent of US consumers aged 13 and over hadn’t downloaded any digital content of any sort in the period.
The claims come just one day after GfK Chart-Track numbers suggested that digital video game sales account for just four per cent of the total UK market.
Nonetheless, NPD does not downplay the significance of the digital economy.
“Devices with online services like Xbox Live and Amazon's Kindle store are driving content associated with particular types of devices, but owners are consuming more general content, as well,” NPD analyst Anita Frazier claimed, as reported by Industry Gamers.
“Today's gamer might be a hard-core teen-ager playing games online with his friends, a 40-something female playing Farmville on Facebook, or everything on either side of that spectrum. We would not have seen this type of audience diversification and expansion if it weren't for connected Internet, smartphone, and online gaming options.”