Kids spent more than $1.5 bn on digital gaming across 7 key markets

MUMBAI: Children are increasingly important drivers of digital gaming consumption. In the first half of 2012, kids in the US, UK, France, Germany, Australia, South Korea, and Japan spent more than $750 million on different digital gaming activities, including downloading mobile gaming apps, purchasing virtual items in free-to-play computer and mobile games, subscribing to premium memberships, and acquiring digital games and DLC content for console and portable game devices.

With growth accelerating, this will translate into over $1.5 billion for the year in these markets, according to GameByte, a syndicated global research product from Interpret which studies digital gamers ages 6-64 in ten global markets, including high-growth emerging markets China, Brazil, and Russia.

“Among the 112 million kids in these markets, 86 million have adopted at least one form of digital gaming and the majority of them have spent money on their hobby. Despite the impressive aggregate numbers, an average kid in the aforementioned seven countries only spent $25 on digital games in a six month time frame, disproportionate to the amount of time they spent on such content, suggesting a significant monetisation opportunity," said Interpret VP of Research Yuanzhe (Michael) Cai.

Mobile games, already accounting for one third of digital gaming revenue, are important growth drivers given the rapidly increasing penetration of smartphones and tablets globally. “In addition to apps and in-game items, smart toys that combine physical toys, virtual gaming worlds, and mobile devices, such as Skylanders Lost Islands from Activision, Mattel’s Apptivity, and Infinity Project from Disney, will propel the industry forward. Let’s also not forget about the huge market in China, where close to one half of these young digital gamers reside," commented Cai.

GameByte is a research product designed to understand cross-platform digital gaming adoption and behaviour across global markets.

It includes market and revenue sizing, as well as attitude and behaviour data for digital gaming business models including downloadable game apps and in-app purchases, subscription MMOs, freemium online games, downloadable content (DLC) on consoles, casual games, and social games. Kids 6-12 and teens/adults 13+ are included in the sample, and countries covered include US, UK, France, Germany, China, Japan, Brazil, Australia, South Korea and Russia. GameByte is available as a subscription, or you can purchase custom data or reports.

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