14% of all US homes have an online gaming sub

By Patrick Garratt
17 November 2009 08:44 GMT


NPD reckons that 14 percent of all American households pay for “online gaming subscription services”. That’s MMOs, to you and us. And Xbox Live, presumably.

The gobbit comes from research on the state of general entertainment subs in the US.

Someone somewhere must be getting very rich. Not that we’d noticed, or anything.

PR after the break. Thanks, for the heads-up, Kotaku.

The NPD Group: Despite Economic Woes, Consumers Not Scrimping on Entertainment Subscriptions
“Entertainment Trends in America” update shows subscription spending grows — continued declines for magazines and newspapers, as satellite TV and mobile data plans rise

Port Washington, NY, November 16, 2009 – According to the latest update to the “Entertainment Trends in America” consumer tracking studies conducted by The NPD Group, a leading market research company, even as newspapers and other traditional forms of subscriptions have declined, most forms of entertainment-content subscriptions have been maintained by U.S. consumers this year, and mobile data plans and other newer kinds of subscription services have expanded their customer bases. Overall monthly per-capita entertainment-content subscription spending rose to $115, which is an increase of nearly 7 percent since last year.

“Despite concerns that the recession would cause consumers to reduce spending on entertainment subscription services, most forms of subscription entertainment are doing just fine,” said Russ Crupnick, entertainment industry analyst for NPD. “Consumers are clearly looking to the value offered by entertainment subscriptions and like what they get for their money; plus, new technologies and products have helped bolster data plans and other newer kinds of subscription-based services.”

As of August 2009, 81 percent of U.S. households subscribed to a television service (satellite TV, basic/premium cable, or fiber-optic television service). A similar percentage of households (76 percent) paid for Internet subscriptions. Seventeen percent subscribed to an online music service or satellite radio; and 14 percent subscribed to online gaming subscription services.

More traditional forms of entertainment subscriptions, however, did not fare so well. The number of people subscribing to newspapers fell by 2 percentage points to reach 29 percent in August 2009. Forty-one percent of consumers subscribed to magazines this year, compared to 43 percent who did so last year.

According to NPD, an influx of new smartphone owners has led to an increase in mobile data-plan subscriptions: 9 percent of U.S. consumers had mobile data subscriptions this year, versus just 6 percent last year. Fourteen percent of consumers subscribed to a home-video subscription service, like Netflix, this year, which is 2 percentage points higher than last year.

Data note: Information in this press release was derived from The NPD Group’s “Entertainment Trends in America” consumer survey update. The survey was fielded to members of NPD’s online consumer panel from Tuesday, August 11th through Monday, August 24, 2009. The final report is based on 10,281 completed responses from U.S. consumers. Final survey data was weighted to represent US population of individuals (age 13 and older). All data was tested for statistical significance at 95 percent confidence level.

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