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The Xbox 360 press conference at E3

U.S. consumers spent $3.5 billion in video games in the first quarter. That figure includes physical games bought in retail stores as well as games purchased in digital formats. The figures are flat compared to a year ago.

The figures include used and rental games ($559 million), and digital games including add-on content downloads, subscriptions, mobile games, and social network games ($1.59 billion). The physical game sales were $1.37 billion in the first quarter.

“Digital spending fully offset the declines in physical format spend in Q1 2013,” said Liam Callahan, industry analyst at the The NPD Group. “There is strong growth in full-game downloads and downloadable add-on content sales across consoles, PCs, and portables, up a combined 25 percent in the first quarter of this year.”


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The figures are not exactly something to get excited about, but they’re also not as bleak as retail-only figures, which have been regularly sliding about 25 percent compared to year ago. Physical sales have been weakening in part because 2013 is a console transition year.

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