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Video game software sales are expected to skyrocket, or rather, continue to skyrocket. A new report from DFC Intelligence has revealed that they estimate the global software market (including both core and casual gamers) will propel the video game industry into the $100 billion dollar range.
GamesIndustry.biz happened upon the report that states that by the end of this year the global gaming market will be around $64 billion, which includes the PC, mobile and console market.
DFC analyst David Cole commented in the report that...
“The new console systems are doing well but much of the predicted growth is on mobile platforms and in BRIC countries. What we are seeing is a game market in 2018 that is likely to be split fairly evenly between console, PC and mobile platforms,"
The report indicates a revised estimate for the mobile market, which is now expected to go from $10 billion in 2013 to $29 billion by 2018. This comes hot on the heels on the Juniper Research report that indicates that the mobile market is expected to exceed or at least measure up to $28 billion by 2016. It's not unlikely that two years later the mobile market could come close to or surpass $29 billion.
There is, however, a minor hurdle to get over in the mobile market: software producers have a hard time getting people to know that their game exists. DFC analyst Jeremy Miller further expounded on this hiccup, saying that...
"The challenge with mobile games is that even as it grows it remains very fragmented and overcrowded. Companies need to be very cautious about their platform strategy and understand which markets and platforms are suitable for their particular product,"
Previous reports indicated that barely one-third of mobile gamers actually find out about mobile games from websites and gaming outlets, meaning that a large section of the audience will just never know about some games.
As for the Xbox One, PS4 and Wii U... funnily enough, the report has low expectations for Microsoft's console. The perception of the device on the market has caused it massive amounts of positive mind-share and in result, the PS4 has propelled itself ahead to the point of which it doesn't look like Nintendo or Microsoft will catch it anytime soon. David Cole mentioned that...
"The Xbox One should carve out a solid share among dedicated action gamers, but due to some questionable business decisions Microsoft's broader entertainment strategy is in disarray despite the release of the new $399 Kinect-less SKU,"
Not only that, but this estimate flies in the face of the IDC (International Data Corporation) report that stated that by 2016 the Xbox One would dominate North America and surpass the PS4 in sales.
As we all know, the gaming industry is 200% unpredictable, and anything can happen between now and 2016. However, based on current market trends, the IDC report looks entirely unlikely.
Like many others within the industry, Cole questioned if Sony could maintain momentum for the rest of the year in order to move toward an install base that the company once held with the PS2? I guess we'll find out over the next couple of months when the sales reports file in.
Cole finished up by stating that...
"We are now tracking hardware and software spending separately. Core gamer spending on high-end PCs, dedicated game devices and accessories is starting to soar. When you add in mobile devices the impact of the gaming consumer on total hardware spending is huge,” ..."The influence this spending will have will have a bearing on all major players in the consumer electronics space.”
There are great things definitely happening in the gaming space, some of which includes renewed vigor thanks to Kickstarter, the reemerging mid-budget publishing sector (thank goodness for this) and a strong focus on indies. How well this plays out over the next few years really is anyone's guess.