The PC platform is a bit of a tour de force in gaming right now, with new research suggesting the industry will hit a global value of $35 billion by 2019.
That puts the PC gaming sector ahead of the coffee industry ($30 billion), and the US fitness clubs and gyms industry ($27 billion).
It also means PC gaming will be worth more than double the global recorded music industry’s current worth. That sector currently weighs in at around $15 billion.
Right now, PC gaming is valued at around $26 billion, so we’re looking at an extra $9 billion generated by the platform in just four years.
Game-business group Open Gaming Alliance (via VentureBeat) says that this expected rise is largely thanks to the growing prevalence of free-to-play games and eSports.
This is based on new research from DFC intelligence, which suggests the rampant publicity generated by eSports paired with the ease-of-access for popular free games like League of Legends will contribute massively to the global market, particularly outside of Asia.
DFC analyst David Cole said: “In past years much of the growth in PC games has been due to adoption of the platforms in Asia. Now we are estimating a potential 86 million PC gamers outside Asia that we have targeted as market growth drivers.”
“These are the consumers that are driving spending not just on software, but also on PC hardware, as they buy expensive equipment to play, view, and record games.”
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The recent surge in the popularity of eSports has been well documented, with game streaming platform Twitch having recently hit a massive 100 million monthly viewers milestone.
The UK is also set to get its first dedicated eSports arena, due to land this very month thanks to a partnership between competitive gaming company Gfinity and cinema chain Vue.
The Gfinity Arena will offer up three custom-built stages with space to hold a 600-strong audience.