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Total consumer spending on video game hardware, software, and accessories fell 1 percent to $4.6 billion in the first quarter in the U.S. despite the arrival of two new consoles on the market.
Market researcher NPD Group did have some positive news on the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 front; video game hardware revenues rose 47 percent to $983 million in the quarter thanks to the new consoles. And these strong year-over-year trends are likely to continue through most of 2014, according to Liam Callahan, game analyst at NPD.
Overall content was down 8 percent due to a 27 percent decline in physical retail sales. Digital game spending, however, grew 4 percent, with full game downloads and downloadable content for consoles and portables driving this small increase.
“For the first quarter of 2014, content spending increased for used games, digital full games, DLC, and mobile, with a modest increase in subscription revenue.” Callahan said, adding that “this is another example of the interplay of physical media as well as digital downloads as consumers transition further into this console generation.”
Gaming accessories sales fell 11 percent during the first quarter to $446 million compared to a year ago. The bright spots were gamepads and interactive gaming toys.