New Survey Reveals Social Gaming Phenomenon in U.S. and U.K.
Nearly a Quarter of All Consumers Now Play Social Games Regularly; Women Drive Latest Video Game Trend Ahead of MenPopCap Games, maker of some of the world’s most popular video games, today unveiled the results of a survey targeting “social gamers”: Consumers in the U.S. and UK who play games on social networking platforms such as Face book and MySpace. More than 24% of respondents said they play social games regularly, indicating a total social gamer population of approximately 100 million in America and the United Kingdom alone. And contrary to prevailing stereotypes, the average social gamer is a 43-year old woman. The survey identified a number of differences between U.S. and UK social gamers, and revealed trends and tendencies which establish the social gamer audience as unique from traditional video game playing audiences. While still in its infancy compared to the traditional video game industry, the social games sector represents a huge opportunity to reach hundreds of millions of consumers who historically have not played video games. The social games sector is projected by industry analysts and researchers to generate revenues of more than US$1 billion in 2010.
Among the nearly 5,000 consumers who responded to the survey, more than 1,200 play games on social networking sites and platforms at least once a week, qualifying them as “social gamers” for the purposes of the survey. Two-thirds of all qualified survey respondents are U.S.-based. 55% of all social gamers are female and 45% are male — with the disparity being even larger among UK consumers (58% vs. 42%). The average age of social gamers is 43, with U.S.-based social gamers averaging 48 years of age compared to 38 for those based in the UK. Further, 46% of American social gamers are 50 or older, compared to just 23% in the UK. Only 6% of all social gamers are age 21 or younger.