by Anton Shilov
05/03/2012 | 08:21 PM
In spite of growing popularity of games on smartphones, media tablets and social networks, the amount of PC gamers is growing. Jon Peddie Research estimates that there are 54 million of "performance" and "enthusiast" gamers (those, who spend over $1000 on equipment) at the moment and that number will grow to 72 million by 2015. This year, gamers will spend whopping $23.6 billion on PC hardware, according to JPR.
The recession appears to be winding down and the enthusiast and performance class PC gamers spoken with their wallets. With chips from AMD, Intel, and Nvidia, new machines from Alienware, HP, Lenovo and others, components and accessories from companies like Asustek Computer, EVGA, Corsair, Logitech and others, and new games in the pipe like Far Cry 3, BioShock Infinite, Crysis 3, ARMA 3, rFactor 2, and Interstellar Marines, the financial engine of the world's most elite gaming platform is fully fueled and will drive the global market to $32 billion by 2015.
"This time the hardware suppliers will be ready for them with new machines, ultra high-definition and 120Hz stereo-3D capable displays, new power supplies, sound systems, cases, cooling, high performance memory, SSDs, keyboards, mice, the list goes on and on. The MMO worlds like EVE and WoW will eat every bit of performance the gamers can bring to them. There is going to be hell to pay and play in the gaming community this summer and going forward," said Jon Peddie, the principal analyst at JPR.
Average selling prices for some components could suffer as competition heats up in 2013, but unit shipments will continue to rise, and components like SSDs are counterbalancing and buoying system integrated and DIY ASPs.
"We are witnessing the market morph and grow into different areas. This has always been a strong point of PC gaming; the ability to adapt to different entertainment environments and requirements. The hobbyist aspect of the DIY market is driving billions in component sales and small form factor rigs are being hooked up to HDTVs, essentially being used as 'super consoles'," said Ted Pollak, senior gaming analyst at JPR.
In its 33 country analysis of the gamer market, JPR has found very strong demand in the BRIC countries for systems, accessories, and upgrades approaching $4.7 billion in 2012 and growing to $7.7 billion by 2015. Russians love PC gaming and Brazil and India are just getting started.
China's internet cafes are driving incredible demand for mainstream and some performance class gaming equipment. However, the market for individually owned performance and enthusiast class equipment has become serious business there as well, with a very strong trend for custom and DIY builds.
Jon Peddie also noted that stereoscopic 3D technology has huge potential, but that it must be standardized to really take hold with consumers. Peddie also notes that PC gaming use of Microsoft Kinect is still in its infancy, but combined with the creative passion of PC developers and modders, it could find interesting application in the coming years.