Research company Nielsen today released its annual report covering all manner of topics about gaming in the United States. The full “US Games 360 Report 2017” is fascinating and well worth a read; and you can read it here. We’ve broken down some of the breakout statistics and figures below.
One of the standout charts has to do with awareness of current consoles. With Microsoft’s Project Scorpio coming out this year, it looks like the company still has work to do to drive awareness in the product. This chart shows that only 11 percent of the US general popular aged 13 or over had heard of Project Scorpio. The awareness leader is PS4 (69 percent), followed by Xbox One/Xbox One S (61 percent), Nintendo Switch (22 percent), and PS4 Pro (21 percent).
In terms of awareness for the surveyed gamer population, Scorpio came in at 14 percent, the lowest of all the categories except for “None of the above.”
And in terms of awareness for non-gamers in the US, Scorpio sits at the bottom as well, at just 3 percent. The PS4 leads the way among non-gamers, at 52 percent, followed by Xbox One/Xbox One S (41 percent), PS4 Pro (9 percent), and Switch (7 percent). Thirty-seven percent said they hadn’t heard any of the consoles.
Scorpio’s relatively low awareness–for all of the surveyed groups–is not a big surprise. Although the console was announced a year ago, Microsoft has not talked all that much about it since. This has changed in the past few weeks, with Microsoft beginning to share more details. The results of the new report come from a survey distributed in Q1 (January-March), which is before Microsoft started to unveil more Scorpio details, which may in part explain the relatively lower awareness percentages.
After Microsoft gives Scorpio an official title and launches a marketing campaign for it, the awareness figures will surely grow. With E3 right around the corner, Microsoft may be waiting until then to kick it into high gear ahead of the console’s release this holiday.
Another notable takeaway from this report is that 77 percent of people who identified as gamers know about PS4 and 72 percent for Xbox One S. This could mean those consoles–which are already performing well in the market–still have room to grow further still.
The Nielsen report also has a slide for purchase intent. The PS4 (21 percent) leads the way in the gamer group, followed by Xbox One (17 percent), Switch (16 percent), PS4 Pro (15 percent), and Scorpio (13 percent).
Another key industry topic that the report covers has to do with physical vs. digital game preferences. While digital consumption is no doubt on the rise, the report shows that, for console gamers aged 13 and older, physical is still the preferred method for the majority (69 percent). As suspected, digital skews higher on PC, with 75 percent of respondents saying they prefer digital.
The Nielsen report also shows that PC is by far the most popular platform for average time spent playing weekly. Twenty-six percent of gamers said they spend the most time on PC during a typical week, followed by PS4/PS4 Pro (14 percent), and Xbox One/Xbox One S (13 percent).
The US Games 360 Report 2017 was compiled from 2000-plus interviews (50 percent male/50 percent female) conducted by online surveys in Q1 (January-March). The responses were then weighted to “ensure representation of the U.S. General Population based on U.S. Census data.”