Children in the United States between the ages of 2 and 17 are playing video games, according to a new study released by research firm NPD Group. According to the NPD's new study around 91 percent of kids between the ages of 2 and 17 (that's roughly 64 million people) are playing video games. That number represents a nine percent increase compared to data collected for 2009. NPD says that growth has been across the entire market, but the biggest gains come from children between the ages 2 and 5, up 17 percentage points since 2009. Females and teens between 15 and 17 are also helping to drive more growth in gaming.
"Year-to-date through August 2011, kids comprised 44 percent of new physical software dollar sales, representing a vitally important consumer segment for the games industry," Frazier said. "Knowing how kids are spending their gaming time and dollars in both traditional and non-traditional outlets is key to staying relevant to this highly engaged audience."
NPD also found that much of this gaming is happening on mobile devices. The research firm noted that 8 percent of children played games on mobile platforms in 2009; that figure has jumped to 38 percent in its latest survey. Usage of portable gaming devices like the PSP or DS, has also grown from 38 percent to 45 percent.
The latest batch of data from NPD Group was collected in August from surveys it conducted of 4,136 children between the ages of 2 and 17. How a two-year old takes a survey is beyond me, but clearly this was not a web-based survey. We'd love to hear more about the methodology on this one. Naturally, with young children playing more games, this means more scrutiny from groups that supposedly have the best interests of families and children at heart.
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