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NPD Says Core Gamer In US In Decline, Mobile Gaming On The Rise

The NPD Group has announced that there is currently around 211.5 million gamers in the US, which is down five percent compared to last year. Out of the six gamer segments listed in the report, only mobile gaming saw an increase compared to last year. The study says that mobile gamers now represent the largest gamer segment, ahead of core gamers, which was the largest segment in 2011.

“Given the long lifecycles of the current consoles and the increasing installed base of smartphones and tablets, it’s not surprising to see a slight decline in the Core Gamer segment. It’s the revenue contribution of the Core Gamer segment that continues to outpace all other segments, and remains vital to the future of the industry.”

“While this study segments the gaming audience based on a number of key variables and attributes, looking across the total gaming audience we see a tremendous impact from mobile gaming, particularly on smartphones and tablets,” she continued. “Because of this, our next study, which will be released later this month, takes a deeper look into the area of mobile gaming.”

– Anita Frazier, industry analyst, The NPD Group.

54 thoughts on “NPD Says Core Gamer In US In Decline, Mobile Gaming On The Rise”

  1. Im sorry, mobile gaming is no different than it was 10 years ago when i used to play Snake on a shitty Nokia brick. It has an insanely small life span, the games are too cheap, or even free to make a serious profit, the experience will never come close to consoles, because people dont play mobile games for more than 10 minutes. Its a cheap way to make money but will never hold up next to console gaming

      1. There were no “facts” that i said were untrue. Yeah, mobile gaming has gotten “bigger”, but only because 1. We can actually track accurately how many people game on mobiles, 2. Most of it is free or very cheap, and 3. Its on their phones, and pretty much all phone have internet access now so anyone can do it.

        Mobile gaming extends only as far as bus journey and lunch breaks. Nobody sits at home and games on their mobile, unless they never played games in the first place.

        1. That may be but ur ignoring the fact that sometimes the developers make more money through that method than core gamers. Plus alot of indie studios don’t have to find a publisher to finance them. You can hate it all u want but money talks and if core gaming keeps shrinking it will eventually collapse on itself.

          1. Core gaming is only shrinking because we’re at the end of a generation. Give it a few years, and you’ll seriously be eating those words.

            Plus, you’d have to have 40 people (normally more) mobile game sales for one core game sold.

          2. It will never collapse upon itself. The whole point of mobile gaming is its cheap, both in price and production, anyone can do it with the no how, and they dont even need a budget. It wont take off, and the people who invest in this “big” games for mobiles will not succeed as well on consoles, because nobody wants to game in a core way on a phone

      2. There are more people with games on their phones than people with consoles. Everyone knew that already. Doesn’t mean that they actually pay for their games or play them nearly as much as console gamers.

    1. Exactly.. I mean I buy and download free games for iPad… Barely ever play them… I bought that dead space game a good few months ago… I haven’t played it in I don’t know how long..
      The controles suck the games are like for 5 minute doses for when you are in a waiting room at a doctors office or something and they don’t have good appeal… There are good games that work well for mobile devices like that… Temple run is nice… I haven’t played in a while but when I did I found it fun and the controles worked… So that’s all tablets and phones will really be good for

    2. the way i feel is this . my 3ds is awesome with amazing full gaming experiences that you can spend a hundred hours playing.

      the phone games i have played are pathetic gimmik shovelware pieces of shit.

      that you would have to be a true retard to prefer over a 3ds game . or even a DS game.

  2. this wont affect nintendo at all . the 3ds will carry on selling at the same rate .

    the wiiu is the ultimate way for familys to play and core gamers to get an awesome cheap console with killer exclusives and cross platform games.

    i think this news is BS again. just because the vita is rotting in hell because it has no games doesnt mean mobile phones are affecting it , lol .

    the mobile phone market could grow HUGE!!! . but the nintendo handheld market should stay roughly the same size or even grow a little bit .

    1. indenial much? I see you on Wiiudaily which writes the biggest BS articles. Everyone outside of that site thinks the zelda wiiU article is bullshit when Miyamoto said back in April that they have ENTERED the PRE PRODUCTION (game planning) of Zelda wiiU…

      1. Miyamoto also said Nintendo wasn’t going to release another version of the 3ds and a week later they announced te XL it’s called covering ur ass to not get in trouble.

          1. The size increases the sweet spot on the 3D effect and makes it so that the image doesn’t double as often when held at a slight slant or when the 3D is turned up[this is especially good news for people with poor eyesight], the battery life is better, and the screen marking issue is solved.

            1. So, if you’re just talking the overall amount of functions, then you’re correct, there’s no change other than size, but the things I mentioned do count as significant differences that are outside of actual design changes.

            2. Expected changes for a resize, but overall – you still play the same games on it.

              I admit the XL is better than the normal 3DS, but in the end. It’s still just what the DSiXL is to the DSi.

  3. mean while the 3ds is selling better than the DS did . which sold 155 million units and was hyper successfull .

    $4 phone games calnt compete with $30-60 fully fledged core games. they just calnt.

  4. The only reason Mobile gaming is “on the rise” is because most of the crap on the android and app store are free, because they’re absolute junk. Not to mention, everyone with a smart phone, which obviously sells better than handhelds, since they’re multi-functional, can easily download a title, but possible never use it. I just don’t understand why people think JUST because mobile games are popular that the handhelds are going to fail. The 3DS has proved to be selling fairly well, the Vita just needs to pick up some steam like the 3DS at the start, but both still have far superior experiences to any mobile game.

  5. Lets put it this way: this study makes it so anyone who has downloaded any game onto their smartphone or tablet as a “gamer”. That means that just about anyone with a smartphone is a gamer according to them. This is not a case. A gamer is someone who has enjoyable and memorable experiences with games (if it is casual OR core), not the one who just plays Angry Birds on the bus to work, or the mum who just plays Cut the Rope in their car for waiting for little Jimmy to come out of school.

    This study also groups anyone with a mobile game as a mobile gamer. This is not the case. Many people who have Angry Birds on their phone primarily play consoles, and just have Angry Birds as a time waster when they are not near a console. I have a couple of games on my Android, but that does not make me a mobile gamer, because I primarily play on consoles and enjoy console gaming.

    Mobile gaming is simply something for people to do who have five minutes to waste. No sane person has ever said “I have been playing consoles for several years now, but I am going to sell my 360 because I can just play Angry Birds on my iPhone and it is just as good”. It is having NO SERIOUS EFFECT on the console or handheld industry.

    They should take average weekly playtimes of people who play solely on consoles; people who solely play mobile; and people who play both console and mobile. Then we will see if the average people gives a crap about mobile gaming.

        1. Whines about me calling people fake gamers, then claims everybody else excluding mobile GAMERS are gamers based solely on their “Experience” is spot on. Right, bullshit.

    1. $350!??!?!
      shows thats that 720 is weak its a current gen console~ Von scrotum.
      what happen to cheap consoles is bad?

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  7. to be honest people are just doing it because it is new, I tried some of these games and after a while they are just boring. I think will get sick and tiered of blisters on their fingers

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