The boom of video games and e-sports
2 min read
By Alex Himler
With the coronavirus pandemic occurring in early 2020 and continuing throughout the year, many people saw it is as a lost year for themselves and in turn, found themselves with quite a bit of free time. As a result, one of the biggest consumer trends that we saw as a result was a massive spike in the consumption of video games, both as a player and as a viewer.
The Pandemic effect
With the pandemic happening and many states being under some form of lockdown, people were not able to go out to restaurants, movies, or other places of entertainment in their free time. As a result, we saw the sale of video games drastically increase over the course of the year. 2020 saw video game sales jump nearly 20% from the previous year, bringing the yearly revenue of the industry up to just over 179 billion dollars. While the 20% increase in revenue may not be completely sustainable, market insights reveal that the industry is still expected to average 10% yearly revenue increases through 2026. In a survey over the summer, video game analyst Mat Piscatella reported that 79% percent of respondents had played video games since the start of the pandemic for an average of 14 hours per week, showcasing just how big the consumer trend for the industry was. This was aided by video games becoming more accessible using more fleshed out and advanced mobile games, easily run PC games, and the still ever-popular console games, meeting needs for nearly every demographic.
In the wake of the pandemic, many professional sports leagues got postponed or canceled, leaving a void in sports media. As a result, we saw E-Sports take the place of programming spots that would usually go to sports like baseball or basketball. At one point in 2020 there were more E-Sports airing on television than other professional sports. E-Sports had an audience of 495 million people worldwide in 2020, further contributing to and showcasing just how big a consumer trend video was throughout the year potentially indicating an opportunity for marketing in the future whether it be through the teams or leagues themselves. The main demographics for E-Sports are younger males with 83% of the audiences being male and 84% of them being under the age of 35. Nearly 40% of men under the age of 25 watch E-Sports which may indicate that this trend will continue even after the pandemic ends.
Trending up for the future
Even with the pandemic ending, many analysts do not expect the growth of video games and E-Sports to slow down in the coming year with the release of next generation consoles and more advanced and accessible systems being released, such as VR systems. With games available for every demographic and E- Sports becoming more recognized as an actual sport, this consumer trend is one that should continue to rapidly increase well into the future.
What are your thoughts on the emergence of E-Sports? Leave a comment below!
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