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Analyst: Game sales could reach $98 billion by 2020

A report from DFC Intelligence forecasts continued growth in video game sales, led by digital game sales and high-end hardware demand in both the PC and console markets.

While sales of physical games are slowing down, a report from DFC Intelligence forecasts continued growth in video game sales, led largely by the digital games market and high-end hardware sales.

Growth in video game sales is obviously a good thing for developers, but devs should still pay close attention to reports like this for the demographic and platform-related forecasts they offer.

The firm expects overall video game sales to be up 8 percent to $79 billion in 2016. By 2020 that number is expected to grow significantly, with sales in the video game market reaching $98 billion worldwide. 

“A major area of growth is occurring as digital products are able to embrace a more premium business model where consumers are willing to pay top dollar upfront for digital content.” said analyst David Cole. “This is a major change in the recent mindset where games are given away for free and forced to rely on a freemium business model that simply does not work for many games.”

While the rising digital game market makes up for decreased physical game sales, the video game industry as a whole is also seeing growth from increased sales of high-end PCs and new consoles like the PS4 Pro and Microsoft’s Project Scorpio. 

According to Cole, the recently released PlayStation VR will help Sony continue its reign as a market leader in the coming years but Nintendo’s mysterious NX console could help it reach markets that neither Sony nor Microsoft have targeted well. 

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