Online gamers to rise 20%, console sales to fall

Stephanie Ethier/In-Stat
14 Apr 2009

While video game console shipments decline during the global recession, growth in online gaming subscriptions is expected to be strong due to a sizable console installed base and growing consumer awareness of online gaming, reports In-Stat.

Console and handheld subscriber growth combined will grow a projected 20.4% between 2005 and 2013. Unit sales of game console will decline moving into 2010, as a result of both the weak economy and a peak in each vendor\'s video game console lifecycle.

The key vendors, including Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo are staking out their online strategy to generate incremental revenue and promote brand loyalty.

Research* by In-Stat found:

"¢ each of the three key vendors is positioned to generate hundreds of millions of dollars in annual online gaming revenue from online service subscriptions, download revenue and/or online advertising;

"¢ Microsoft\'s Xbox Live service will clearly lead, with projected revenue of over $1 billion in revenue annually by 2013;

"¢ worldwide broadband subscriptions will reach $562 million in 2009;

"¢ the combination of broadband, installed home networks, and pervasive Wi-Fi in gaming devices, is fueling online gaming subscriber growth.

In 2008, total video game console unit shipments reached $88 million worldwide, up 7% from 2007.

* Despite Slowing Console Sales, Online Gaming Subscriber Growth Continuing Worldwide

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