Digital and mobile game sales have grossed more money than physical games for the first time, a new report shows. It’s part of a trend that means the stereotype of gamers as teenage boys is increasingly outdated.
The figures come from industry trade body the Entertainment Software Association. It’s latest annual report reveals that last year the gaming industry, between hardware, accessories and games, grossed $21.53 billion.
In 2013, digital sales made up 53 percent of the total. That’s up from 29 percent in 2010, largely because the figures include purchases of low-cost mobile game apps.
The report also shows that 59 percent of Americans now play video games to some extent, and that just over half of US homes have a games console. The gender balance is almost even, with 52 percent of gamers being men. When you hone in on just those in the “most frequent game purchasers” then there’s a 50-50 split.
There’s also a relatively even spread by age: 29 percent being children, 32 percent aged 18 to 35, and 39 percent being aged over 35. In fact, if you just split to men, women, boys and girls, women are actually the dominant gaming demographic, making up 36 percent of players. Boys only account for 17 percent.