Newzoo1 – a renowned global provider of games and e-sports analytics – estimates the volume of the global videogame market at 174.9 billion USD at the end of 2020, which corresponds to a 19.6% increase over the 2019 year-end value (146.2 billion USD). This exceptionally dynamic growth is attributed by Newzoo to greater interest in videogames during the COVID-19 pandemic. Mobility restrictions introduced in many countries benefitted those forms of entertainment, which can be enjoyed at home. In 2020 the strongest strong growth was observed in the mobile and console segments. The former grew by 25.6%, reaching 86.3 billion USD, while the latter grew by 21.0%, reaching 51.2 billion USD. The PC market reached a volume of 37.4 billion USD, having increased by 6.2%.
Chart 1 2020 estimated global videogame market volume per device (%)
Estimates published by ESA (Entertainment Software Association)2 concerning the US market, which is the most important region from the point of view of the Group’s activities, confirm the domination of smartphones in this area, although their advantage over PCs and consoles is not particularly pronounced. 61% of American gamers include smartphones among their most frequently used gaming devices, with PCs and consoles coming in at 52% and 49% respectively.
Long-term projections remain bullish. Newzoo claims that the global market will reach 217.9 billion USD by 2023, with a cumulative annual growth rate (CAGR) in 2020-2023 at 7.6%. The PWC “Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2020-2024”3 report projects a CAGR of 6.5% for the videogame and e-sports market between 2020 and 2024.
Chart 2 Estimated share of individual regions in the 2020 global videogame market (%)
In terms of territorial distribution, Asia and Pacific countries account for 84.3 billion USD (17.5% y/y increase), which represents nearly 50% of the 2020 global market volume. North America comes in second place, at 44.7 billion USD (21.4% y/y increase), closely followed by Europe (19.9% growth, reaching 32,9 billion USD). The strongest growth was observed in the Middle East and Africa – the region stands at 6.2 billion USD, having gained 30.2% in 2020. Notably, two countries – China and the United States – jointly hold a 49% share in the global market (44.0 billion USD and 41.3 billion USD respectively)4.
1 Global Game Revenues Up an Extra $15 Billion This Year as Engagement Skyrockets, Newzoo, 4 November 2020, accessed on 20 February 2021; newzoo.com/insights/articles/game-engagement-during-covid-pandemic-adds-15-billion-to-global-games-market-revenue-forecast/
2 2020 Essential Facts About the Video Game Industry; accessed on 10 February 2021; theesa.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/07/Final-Edited-2020-ESA_Essential_facts.pdf
3 Perspectives from the Global Entertainment & Media Outlook 2020–2024, PWC; accessed on 10 February 2021; summary available at pwc.com/gx/en/entertainment-media/outlook-2020/perspectives.pdf
4 Global Game Revenues Up an Extra $15 Billion This Year as Engagement Skyrockets, Newzoo; 4 Novembr 2020; accessed on 20 February 2021; newzoo.com/insights/articles/game-engagement-during-covid-pandemic-adds-15-billion-to-global-games-market-revenue-forecast/