IDC And IDG Entertainment Unveil Groundbreaking Video Game Research at E for All™

FRAMINGHAM, MA – October 19, 2007 – Two new studies from research firms IDC and IDG Entertainment (IDGE) profiling the future of the video game marketplace, as well as the five key segments of gamers, were presented today at the Entertainment for All™ Expo (E for All™) ( www.EforAllExpo.com ) at the Los Angeles Convention Center. The studies revealed important new data on the increasing acquisition of video games through non-traditional means, as well as in-depth information on those people who are purchasing games.

IDC provided new information on the evolution of the video game marketplace and what retailers should expect this holiday season and beyond. IDC covers the game industry globally but focused on the North American market at E for All. Billy Pidgeon, IDC’s program manager for games research discussed the booming popularity of online capable video game consoles (including Microsoft Xbox 360™, Sony PlayStation(®)3 and the Nintendo Wii™) and projected that by 2008 the North American installed base of such consoles will be over 37 million units.

“By the end of 2007, over 31 percent of online capable video game consoles in North America will be in active online use by 14 million online console gamers,” said Pidgeon. “The increase in revenue derived from the online use of game consoles, including subscriptions (mostly Xbox LIVE), downloadable content, and advertising represents the largest growth in the console software sector. In North America alone, online console revenue will triple from $133 million in 2006 to $583 million in 2007. Consumers are increasingly purchasing games by non-traditional means such as downloads or subscriptions.”

IDC’s Pidgeon noted that the retail marketplace will need to shift in order to adapt to these significant changes in gamers’ purchasing behavior. In fact, IDC projects that video game console software sales through traditional third party online and retail stores will see a 19.5 percent revenue growth over 2006, whereas downloadable content will see a growth rate of 1,029 percent and subscription sales will increase “only” 158 percent.

“In 2007, game-related downloadable content derived from manufacturers’ proprietary online console networks will reach $296 million, while subscription revenue will increase from $107 million in 2006 to $277 million,” said Pidgeon. “While software sales are still significant — increasing from $8 billion in 2006 to $9.5 billion this year — content sold, accessed, or downloaded online to video game consoles over manufacturers’ proprietary networks will remain the industry’s most exciting growth opportunity in this hardware cycle.”

Moving from the overall game marketplace to consumers themselves, IDGE released new information on the people purchasing games. IDGE’s marketing director, Simon Tonner, provided data from their third annual U.S. Gamer Segmentation Study on the five key gamer segments, based on their attitudes toward gaming, as well as their social characteristics, and purchasing habits. The groundbreaking research provides industry professionals with uniquely in-depth information about how to best target gamers of all levels, from the most involved to the very casual.

“In order for game publishers and retailers to truly connect with today’s gamers they need to understand the subtle but important differences in the role video gaming plays in their lives,” said Tonner. “As gaming becomes more interactive and mainstream, marketers need to understand what motivates these various gamer segments, how their tastes differ and what are they looking for when shopping for their next game or console.”

IDGE’s five gamer segments are as follows.

Core Gamers: Core Gamers choose gaming as their main form of

entertainment and want to maximize their time gaming.

They prefer gaming over going to the movies or out to

dinner.

Status Gamers: Status Gamers are proud of their gaming skills and

enjoy being the first to try the newest and hottest

titles. They also like to discuss their gaming

experiences at school or work.

Social Gamers: Social Gamers view gaming as a communal experience.

They prefer to play games with people they care

about, forming a social link, and coordinate social

functions around gaming.

Active Gamers: Active Gamers prefer games where movements are

reflected in the game and allow gamers to get out of

their chairs. They use gaming as a physical release.

Casual Gamers: Casual Gamers use gaming as an emotional release and

as a way to play different roles. Casual gamers view

gaming as a secondary form of entertainment and don't

feel the necessity to be the first to try a new game.

“Besides differentiating psychographic profiles, the key gamer segments we identified also differ in their spending habits. ‘Status Gamers’ have spent the most on video games and systems over the past 6 months and are expected to spend the most in the next 6 months with ‘Core’ and ‘Active’ gamers close behind,” said Tonner. “In the past 6 months alone, ‘Status Gamers’ have spent, on average, $296.20. On the opposite end of the spectrum, ‘Casual Gamers’ have spent $82.20 over the same time period.”

About E for All™

Produced by IDG World Expo, Entertainment for All(TM) Expo (E for All™) ( www.EforAllExpo.com ) is North America’s premiere video game event. A celebration of video games and the people who play them, the event will bring together the entire game community, from consumers and media to publishers, developers and retailers. The Expo will feature exhibits from leading interactive entertainment companies that will allow consumers to try and buy the newest video games and gadgets. Other event highlights include the Major League Gaming’s competitive gaming tournament, the acclaimed Video Games Live™ concert, celebrity appearances, the Game Developers Conference (GDC) Game Careers Seminar, and "Into the Pixel," an exhibition of video game art. For more information, please visit www.EforAllExpo.com . Companies interested in learning more about exhibit opportunities, please contact Richard Kazarian at (508) 424-4828, or email richard_kazarian@idg.com.

About IDG Entertainment

For more than 18 years IDG Entertainment (IDGE) has led the industry by providing a portfolio of highly read multiplatform gaming magazines and websites. Properties include GamePro magazine and the IDGEntertainment Online Network with nearly 10 million unique visitors per month, including GamePro.com, GameProFamily.com, Games.net, GamerHelp.com,GameDownloads.com, GameGirl.com, OMGHalo.com, SucksOrRules.com, BlogFaction.com, Modojo.com, GameRevolution.com and MegaGames.com. The portfolio provides synergy between print and digital properties, reaching more than 13 million consumers monthly.

About IDC

IDC is the premier global provider of market intelligence, advisory services, and events for the information technology, telecommunications, and consumer technology markets. IDC helps IT professionals, business executives, and the investment community make fact-based decisions on technology purchases and business strategy. More than 900 IDC analysts provide global, regional, and local expertise on technology and industry opportunities and trends in over 90 countries worldwide. For more than 43 years, IDC has provided strategic insights to help our clients achieve their key business objectives. IDC is a subsidiary of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research, and events company. You can learn more about IDC by visiting www.idc.com .

About IDG World Expo

IDG World Expo ( www.idgworldexpo.com ) is a leading producer of tradeshows and events for professionals and consumers seeking world-class education, peer-to-peer networking and one-stop comparison shopping. IDG World Expo's portfolio of conferences and events includes Entertainment For All™ (E For All™), E3 Media & Business Summit, GreenXchange Xpo™, LinuxWorld Conference & Expo®, Macworld Conference & Expo® and Next Generation Data Center™ (NGDC™). IDG World Expo is a business unit of IDG, the world's leading technology media, research and event company.

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