A new and extensive report from research firm Newzoo predicts that the global games market will reach $102 billion by 2017. The data comes from Zewzoo's "Global Games Market Report," which also offers a number of other interesting predictions about the global games industry and some of its (current) biggest players including Nintendo, Google, GungHo, SuperCell, Microsoft, and King.
The firm starts by saying that the global games market will reach $102.9 billion by 2017 and an annual growth rate of 8 percent. The firm also predicts that mobile, social and online gaming "will shape the games markets towards 2017 in very distinctive ways." They point out that in 2013 the top ten public games companies accounted for almost 44 percent of the $75.5 billion global games revenues. Apple generated almost identical game revenues as Nintendo ($2.4Bn) due to their 30 percent revenue share of app store spending, with Google’s revenue similarly equaling that of Ubisoft.
But markets outside of the US and Western Europe will be the focus of growth and expansion - places like China, for example. The firm claims that "82 percent of this year’s $6 billion global market growth is coming out of the Asia-Pacific region."
At a glance, the firm predicts that:
- US and Western European markets will increasingly leverage free-to-play, cross-screen functionality and brand power to offset static revenues.
- Established names in the games industry will be challenged by mobile challengers from the East and West. Console manufacturers and developers will also be tested, with an entire industry segment set to take a hard look at the future.
- By the end of 2014 far more mobile game companies will have matched or surpassed Japanese giant Nintendo than in 2013. GungHo, SuperCell and King will join Google and Apple as having grossed more revenue with just a handful of games than Nintendo with its entire game portfolio at its disposal.
- Mobile gaming will secure over a quarter (27 percent) of the global games market by the end of 2014, yielding revenues in excess of $21Bn. In 2015, monthly mobile game revenues will surpass those generated by TV and handheld consoles combined. Full year console revenue will end up just marginally ahead of smartphone and tablet gaming: $26.4Bn vs. $26.3Bn.
- By 2015 US physical games sales will account for less than 20 percent in 2015. This decline will escalate if publishers choose to embrace the organizational and financial advantages of digital-only releases...
- If Tencent continues to grow at its current pace, the company will have captured over 10% of the global games market by 2016.
- There will be 2.0 billion gamers globally by 2016, reaching almost 2.2 billion gamers by 2017.
- Two years from now the US will be dethroned as King of the global games market. China will be world’s biggest games market, coming in at over $25Bn.
- In 2013 Asia-Pacific region consumers accounted for 42% of global game revenues. The region will take almost half (49 percent) of the global market in 2017.
-By 2017 one in three game dollars will be spent on smartphone or tablet entertainment. Smartphone and tablet gaming are set to generate $21.7Bn by end of 2014, representing more than a quarter of all global game revenues. By the end of 2017 mobile gaming will have seized a 34 percent market share, surpassing $35Bn.
- While global TV console revenues are expected to show marginal growth (+1%) towards 2017, MMO revenues will reach unprecedented heights. By 2017, they will almost equal TV consoles at just under $24Bn, capturing 23 percent of the global games Market.
- By 2017 the global games market will surpass the $100Bn threshold. A large share of this growth will be driven by the rising population numbers and access to technology in Asia, Eastern Europe, LATAM and MEA. In the more mature but saturated markets of the US and Western Europe, smartphones and tablets enable gamers more access and time with their games, turning time spend into a crucial revenue growth factor. The successful branching out of game franchises into other media formats and live events will serve to fuel growth in these mature markets.