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EA shares some surprisingly robust full-game download numbers, which help illustrate why publishers have been turning in such high digital revenues these days.

Christian Nutt, Contributor

May 11, 2016

1 Min Read

EA announced very positive full-year financial results yesterday, and as part of that, the company mentioned that 55 percent of its most recent fiscal year revenues came from digital sources. The company does publish a lot of mobile games, but it's also the number-one Western publisher on both the PlayStation 4 and Xbox One. 

So how are digital downloads doing on current-gen consoles?

According to EA CFO Blake Jorgensen, the industry average is "above 30 percent" -- he estimates 32 percent -- and growing. These comments come from the company's earnings call following its results, as transcribed at SeekingAlpha.

But some titles do even better: the company's Madden NFL (not including mobile) "was well north of 50 percent when you look at a full-year number," he said. 

Full-game downloads were up 18 percent year-on-year; more to the point, Jorgensen and EA "assume that we're continually going to see growth that we saw like in the past year," he said.

That contributes a huge amount to profits, too: he attributed the boost in full-game digital downloads on current-gen consoles as a major driver of the company's gross margin, which grew 110 percent year over year.

Video game specialist retailer GameStop's management downplayed the impact of digital game sales late last year, but was met with skepticism from industry-watchers. Now we have a better picture of the truth. 

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