Global spending on video games will grow 10.4 percent to $74 billion this year and reach $112 billion by 2015, according to a new report from Gartner.
Online gaming will grow the fastest — averaging 27 percent a year — taking share from game software, the report said.
The research giant predicts that spending on game subscription fees will decline slightly as gamers spend more on virtual goods and services in free online games, including social games that make their money from such microtransactions.
This will no doubt be cited by analysts talking up the stock of Zynga, if it goes public as it said it would last week.
Gartner also predicts that mobile gaming will grow fast, taking 20 percent of the market share in 2015, up from 15 percent last year
But consoles will still drive the most overall sales. according to the firm’s “Market Trends: Gaming Ecosystem 2011.”
Console hardware and software generated more than two-thirds of the sales in the game industry last year, Gartner said.
“This large market size means that many consumers embrace gaming as a core piece of their entertainment budget and will continue to play as long as game publishers deliver compelling and fun games,” research director Fabrizio Biscotti said in a release.