Videogame Players Want Interactive Features that Enhance Their Gaming Experience, IDC Says

FRAMINGHAM, MA – AUGUST 29, 2000 – With the next generation of videogame consoles hitting the market, interactive functionality features are under examination. Some have even speculated that game consoles with interactive capabilities will replace PCs. New research from IDC, however, indicates videogamers are much more interested in using interactive capabilities to enhance their gaming experience.


IDC surveyed 350 U.S. households with videogame consoles to learn about their playing and purchasing habits and to gauge their interest in utilizing videogame console interactivity.

“We received mixed responses about the importance of interactivity,” said Schelley Olhava, an analyst in IDC’s Consumer Devices research program. “Essentially, it’s the type of interactivity that determines a gamer’s interest.”

According to IDC’s survey, the ability to download new games or levels of games seems to be the most important capability while Web surfing and email appear to be the least important. In fact, almost 50% of respondents in IDC’s survey said they are very interested in downloading new games or levels. Less than 30% said they would be very interested in Web surfing or emailing using their videogame console. What’s more significant, however, is the almost 40% who said they are not interested at all.

“Many gamers view basic surfing and email as strictly a PC function. This perception has lead to extremely muted interest in using the console for basic surfing and email,” Olhava said. “The key to successful interactivity via gaming platforms will be the delivery of features designed specifically to enrich one’s game play.”

Online gaming is one interactive function that has received a lot of attention. Almost 32% of respondents said they are very interested in playing games online. However, 35% said they are not interested at all. Interestingly, households without PCs were less interested than households with PCs.

In addition to developing interactive gaming strategies and infrastructures, videogame developers will also have to educate and market these enhanced activities to overcome the skepticism of finicky gamers for them to succeed.

Information like the above can be found in IDC’s new report, The Real Truth About Videogamers: IDC’s 2000 Videogame Survey (IDC #B22719). This report looks at the demographics of today’s gamer, platform preferences, and game-playing habits. The report also looks at purchasing trends for hardware and software, intent to purchase, and knowledge of future systems. Finally, the report measures gamers’ interest in using the interactive features of next-generation consoles. To purchase the report, contact Patrick Steeves at 1-800-343-4952, ext. 6787 or at

About IDC

IDC delivers dependable, high-impact insights and advice on the future of ebusiness, the Internet, and technology to help organizations make sound business decisions. IDC forecasts worldwide markets and trends and analyzes business strategies, technologies, and vendors, using a combination of rigorous primary research and in-depth competitive analysis. IDC provides global research with local content through more than 600 analysts in 43 countries worldwide. IDC's customers comprise the world's leading IT suppliers, IT organizations, ebusiness companies, and the financial community. Additional information can be found at

IDC is a division of IDG, the world's leading IT media, research and exposition company.

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