Here’s an excellent primer on the state of the games industry and the investment opportunities as game funds emerge and private equity takes a deeper look at gaming.

According to CMS Wire, Juniper Research predicts:

Web 2.0 applications and services will hit US$ 18.9 billion in 2014

Presence based Mobile Web 2.0 services will increase to more than $6 billion by 2012

Getjar estimates the value of mobile apps alone in 2012 to reach US$ 17 billion

Here’s a great page that Facebook updates with their stats. As of today, they have:

Company Figures
  • More than 400 million active users
  • 50% of our active users log on to Facebook in any given day
  • More than 35 million users update their status each day
  • More than 60 million status updates posted each day
  • More than 3 billion photos uploaded to the site each month
  • More than 5 billion pieces of content (web links, news stories, blog posts, notes, photo albums, etc.) shared each week
  • More than 3.5 million events created each month
  • More than 3 million active Pages on Facebook
  • More than 1.5 million local businesses have active Pages on Facebook
  • More than 20 million people become fans of Pages each day
  • Pages have created more than 5.3 billion fans

Average User Figures

  • Average user has 130 friends on the site
  • Average user sends 8 friend requests per month
  • Average user spends more than 55 minutes per day on Facebook
  • Average user clicks the Like button on 9 pieces of content each month
  • Average user writes 25 comments on Facebook content each month
  • Average user becomes a fan of 4 Pages each month
  • Average user is invited to 3 events per month
  • Average user is a member of 13 groups

International Growth

  • More than 70 translations available on the site
  • About 70% of Facebook users are outside the United States
  • Over 300,000 users helped translate the site through the translations application


  • More than one million developers and entrepreneurs from more than 180 countries
  • Every month, more than 70% of Facebook users engage with Platform applications
  • More than 500,000 active applications currently on Facebook Platform
  • More than 250 applications have more than one million monthly active users
  • More than 80,000 websites have implemented Facebook Connect since its general availability in December 2008
  • More than 60 million Facebook users engage with Facebook Connect on external websites every month
  • Two-thirds of comScore’s U.S. Top 100 websites and half of comScore’s Global Top 100 websites have implemented Facebook Connect


  • There are more than 100 million active users currently accessing Facebook through their mobile devices.
  • People that use Facebook on their mobile devices are twice more active on Facebook than non-mobile users.
  • There are more than 200 mobile operators in 60 countries working to deploy and promote Facebook mobile products says:

  • The average age of social network gamers is below 30 years old in the U.S., Germany, France and the U.K.
  • 29% of social network gamers are under age 20
  • 8% of social network gamers are above age 50 in the U.S.
  • Only 4% of social network gamers are above age 50 in Europe
  • The average age of the social gamer is 43
  • 24% of U.S. gamers consider social networks as their primary gaming method
  • 10% of European gamers consider social networks as their primary gaming method
  • Almost 60% of social gamers in the U.S. are female

According to an article by, Set-top boxes are seeing booming growth:

  • 147.8 million set-top boxes will ship worldwide in 2010 (+11.5% over 2009)
  • 132.6 million set-top boxes shipped in 2009
  • iSuppli predicts 193.9 million units will ship by 2014
  • Global IPTV subscribers will increase to more than 123 million units by 2014
  • There were approximately 33 million Global IPTV subscribers at the end of 2009 (~30% CAGR)

According to Flurry:

  • Apple has grown its U.S. market share from 1% in 2008 to 5% in 2009.
  • In 2009, console video games accounted for 71% of game revenue
  • Portable (handheld)  games was 24%
  • iPhone accounted for the remaining 5%
  • iPhone game software accounted for 19% of all revenue in 2009
  • Sony PSP games accounted for 11% of all revenue in 2009

comScore and Offerpal recently released the results of a study on social gamers:

According to the study:

  • 53.3% of respondents reported they would be “very likely” to complete a marketing action such as filling out a survey, watching a video, shopping at online retailers or signing up for a subscription in order to get points for the games they play on leading social networks
  • 22.8% of respondents reported they would be willing and are able to buy points using cash payment methods such as credit cards, PayPal, bank transfers or mobile billing.
  • 29.7% of social gamers do not have the ability or the means to pay for virtual currency with cash options
  • Among those who do have the ability and means to pay, 34.9%  are “very unlikely” to part with their money in order to purchase points
  • 75% of consumers who viewed a video ad in exchange for virtual currency had never before completed any type of offer nor made a direct payment
  • ~10% of those users went on to complete at least one or more transactions-often incremental cash purchases-in just the first week after watching a video
  • Of users whose first “payment” of virtual currency was by earning it through Offerpal’s shopping rewards program, 21% went on to make a second transaction through the Offerpal system within one week
  • Gamers in the 25-34 age range are most likely (70.9 % “very likely”) to be willing to earn virtual currency through marketing actions
  • 54.5% of gamers report playing games online at least once a day
  • 26.7% of gamers report playing games online several times a week
  • 11.5% play about once a week
  • 7.3% play two to three times a month

When asked what kinds of games they play on a regular basis:

  • 58.4% of the respondents said they regularly play virtual world/simulation games
  • 40.3% arcade games
  • 33.5% role-playing games
  • 29.7% action games
  • 26.9% board games
  • 25.6% card games
  • 23.4% word games
  • Of those who say they are “very likely” to buy points with a cash payment method, a majority of the users are men (53.4%) and a plurality in the 25-34 age range (42.8%)
  • 85.4% of the users who say they are “very likely” to buy points with cash are also “very likely” to earn points through marketing actions

The study was conducted between February 12th and February 15th, 2010, and includes detailed responses from 799 comScore panelists. Respondents were filtered to only include users who play games on the leading social network at least once a month.

According to M2 Research and Nintendo, there are 45 million people primarily playing console video games in the U.S.

  • Nintendo estimates 26% of these primarily console gamers are female
  • This is approximately 11.7 million female console gamers
  • Wii – 80% = 9.3 million
  • X360 – 11% = 1.29 million
  • PS3 – 9% = 1.05 million
  • Total = 11.7 million Females

M2 Research estimates there are:

  • 130 million women currently playing online PC games worldwide
  • 140 million men currently playing online PC games worldwide

Close to 40% of all World of Warcraft players are female, or almost 3 million players

According to Mindshare/Ogilvy & Mather:

  • Women account for 85% of consumer purchases
  • U.S. women spend more than $5 trillion annually on consumer goods and services
  • 22% shop online at least once a day
  • 61% influence consumer electronic purchases
  • Women account for 66% of all PC purchases
Pearl Research released a double report focused on the games and digital entertainment markets in Vietnam and India, two fast growing markets. Both markets are driven by rising incomes, increasing PC and Internet penetration rates, and a large population of youth that are actively seeking out entertainment content.
  • There are more than 50 online games in the market in Vietnam
  • There is growth in f locally-developed titles, aimed specifically at Vietnamese gamers
  • There are approximately 22 million Internet users in Vietnam with an Internet penetration rate of 25%
  • Top online games in Vietnam can attract 200,000 users
  • Internet cafes are where the majority of online  games are played
  • India’s Internet user base is at 40 million
  • The games market can be challenging with infrastructure issues and a nascent gaming culture
  • More than 180,000 Internet cafes across India provide access to Internet and digital content.
Pearl Research forecasts the number of gamers in Vietnam and India toreach 25 million by 2014