How big is the video game industry?

The coverage and attention that the E3 gaming expo gets is a testament to the size and influence the video game industry has on the world.

The drastic growth of our favourite pastime into popular culture has seen the once marginalised industry become a dominant powerhouse in the entertainment world. But how big is the video game industry exactly?

Well, it trumps both the music and film industry in terms of revenue, which is an impressive statistic to say the least.

Here is a look at the industry and its major players.


Size of global traditional video game market revenue, excluding mobile games on smart phones and tablets:

  • $70 billion, up from $65 billion in 2011.

Size of global video game market revenue, including mobile games on smart phones and tablets:

  • $78.5 billion for 2012.

Retail software revenue:

  • $28 billion, down from $29.5 billion in 2011.

Online revenue, including digital delivery, subscriptions, Facebook games:

  • $24 billion, up from $18 billion in 2011.
Source: DFC Intelligence

Online gaming and digital distribution playing its role in industry growth.


Microsoft Corp

  • * Xbox 360 launched in the United States: November 2005.
  • * Xbox consoles sold: 67 million.
  • * Kinect motion sensors sold: 19 million.

Major initiative:

Microsoft is expected to show off new entertainment features of its Xbox 360 and a new version of Halo.

Sony Corp

  • * PlayStation 3 launched in the United States and Japan: November 2006.
  • * As of March 31, PlayStation3 units sold: Over 63 million units.
  • * As of June 6, 2011, Sony Move motion sensors shipped: 8.8 million units.

Major initiative: Sony is expected to push new games to boost sales of the Vita and PlayStation 3.

Nintendo Co Ltd

  • * Launched Wii in the United States: November 2006.
  • * Wii units shipped: More than 95 million.
  • * DS units shipped: More than 151 million.
  • * 3DS units: More than 17 million.

Major initiative: Nintendo will finally unveil the first home console in six years at E3. Device is expected to feature HD graphics, a special tablet controller and motion sensors.


Activision Blizzard

  • Annual revenue: $4.8 billion.
  • Top franchises: “Call of Duty” and “World of Warcraft”.

Electronic Arts Inc

  • Annual revenue: $4.1 billion.
  • Top franchises: “The Sims” and “Madden NFL”.

Take-Two Interactive Software

  • Annual revenue: $826 million.
  • Top franchises: “Grand Theft Auto” and “Red Dead Redemption”.


  • Annual revenue: 1.06 billion euros.
  • Top franchises: “Assassin’s Creed” and “Prince of Persia” and Tom Clancy titles such as “Splinter Cell”.
Source: BusinessTech

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