US console penetration tops 40%

According to the Next-gen.biz, media information company Nielsen has released new figures that show 45.7 million US homes owned a console in Q4 2006 – 41 per cent of US TV households,

Nielsen’s report, ‘The State of the Console’ reveals that the number of video game consoles in US TV homes grew by 18.5 per cent since Q4 2004.

The figure has grown year-on-year. While 2006 saw 41 per cent of homes with game consoles, 2005’s figure was 39 per cent (43 million) and 2004 35 per cent (38.6 million).

Nielsen also reports that the top 20 per cent of console users during Q4 2006 accounted for over 74 per cent of total console usage, averaging five hours and 45 minutes of play per day.

And even before PlayStation 3 and Wii are taken into account, there are over 4.4 million online-connected consoles.

Also, two-thirds of all men in TV households have access to a video game console in their homes, with a total of 148.4 million people having access to consoles at home.

The upward trend is expected to continue with the new generation of consoles, said Nielsen.

“The video game console has become a major player in the battle for the living room,” said VP of Nielsen wireless and interactive services Jeff Herrmann.

“In households across the country, consoles are successfully competing for consumers’ time and attention; not simply as gaming platforms, but as multimedia hubs that also can deliver high quality digital movies and IPTV.”

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