Gaming has never been more popular, according to research powerhouse Nielsen. It’s just released State of the Console study reports that in Q4 2006, 45.7 million US homes owned a video game console, representing 41.1% of all TV households in the country – up 18% from 2004 figures. The number of TV households is currently sitting around 111 million. So, in short, the console market has some catching up to do, and more importantly, still has a lot of room to grow.
In addition to these new stats, for the first time Nielsen’s number-crunchers will deliver metered video game usage and demographic data by game title, genre and platform in the upcoming GamePlay Metrics study, which is due out later this year. The goal is to provide advertisers, game developers, retailers and marketers with raw data they’ve never been able to access before.
Here are a few more tidbits from the ground-breaking report to whet the collective whistle:
• The number of US households with a console connected to the internet has grown to more than 4.4 million. Interestingly, this number doesn’t take into account Sony’s Playstation 3 and Nintendo’s Wii.
• Two-thirds of all men in TV households between the ages of 18 and 34 have a video game console at home.
• During Q4 2006, the top 20% of users accounted for 74.4% of total console usage.
• In any given minute of the day, 1.6 million people in the US are using a video game console.
• As of year’s end 2006, roughly 148.4 million people in the US had at least one video game console system at home.