Online Games Market to Reach $4.4 Billion by 2010

Posted by jgaudiosi :: Online Gaming

Poppit2lgAccording to a new study by Parks Associates, the online game market will grow from $1.1 billion in 2005 to $4.4 billion by 2010 in North America. Currently, PC gamers spend an average of 18.5 hours playing each week, which is more than console (13.6 hours), portable (8.9 hours), or mobile games (4.6 hours). Of those PC gamers, 70 percent play some form of multiplayer online game. The bulk of the time spent playing online games is with casual games on popular sites like AOL Games, Yahoo! Games, MSN and Pogo.com.

New market research detailing the growth of the online game industry will be announced at the Austin Game Conference (AGC) next week on September 6th, 7th, and 8th in Austin, Texas. At a time of exponential growth in online games, the fourth annual Austin Game Conference will bring together over 2,400 game industry professionals from 20 countries representing more than 520 companies. The announcement was made by The Game Initiative, the organizer of the Austin Game Conference and the leading producer of conferences and events for game industry professionals.

Additional market research, forecasts and current industry trends from researchers Parks Associates, NPD Group, and MMOGCHART.COM will be discussed in detail at the Austin Game Conference.

"The Austin Game Conference spurs critical thinking and dialogue within the industry," said Christopher V. Sherman, Austin Game Conference Executive Director. "This year's conference encourages attendees to look at game development from a variety of fresh perspectives as well as to re-think the preconceived stereotype of the avid game consumer."

Austin Game Conference includes six tracks dedicated to the online game industry segment. Attendees can focus in the areas of Multiplayer Design, Multiplayer Business/Production, Multiplayer Tech/Art, Games in Asia, Multiplayer Service/Support and Casual Games.

Blizzard Entertainment's VP of Game Design Rob Pardo will deliver the opening keynote Wednesday morning, offering his thoughts on the success of World of Warcraft and where Blizzard fits into the quickly evolving online world. Offering a slightly different perspective will be Michael Dell, Chairman of the Board at Dell Inc. In his Thursday afternoon fireside chat, Michael Dell will address Dell Inc.'s stake in the future of the game industry and take questions from the audience.

Major Austin Game Conference supporters include Microsoft Casual Games, Online Game Services, Inc., IBM, Sony Computer Entertainment America, Critical Mass Interactive, Dolby Laboratories, BioWare Corp, K2 Network, Emergent Game Technologies, Ageia Technologies, Audiokinetic, Multiverse, WildTangent, Autodesk, Vivendi Games, Softimage, and Simutronics-Hero Engine.

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