In brief: China has long been the largest gaming market by revenue, but this year will see the US retake the number one spot for the first time since 2015, according to a new report.
Analytics company Newzoo’s 2019 Global Games Market Report predicts that the American gaming market will jump 21 percent YoY to $36.9 billion in 2019, while China’s will fall by more than $1 billion to $36.5 billion.
Part of China’s decline was the result of a nine-month hold on approving new game licenses, put in place because of a government reshuffle and rising concerns over violence and the 'addictive effects' in games. It saw the country's gaming market slow for the first time in over a decade.
In addition to China’s freeze, an increase in new console users and huge growth in console spending helped boost the US market.
On a global scale, the games industry is expected to bring in $152.1 billion in revenue this year, a 9.6 percent YoY increase. Of that amount, 45 percent ($68.5 billion) will come from mobile platforms. Consoles account for the second-highest share ($47.9 billion), and PC is third with $35.7 billion.
While the US might now be the largest gaming market, the Asia-Pacific region remains the largest region, with $72.2 billion in generated revenue. All locations have seen yearly increases, and it’s noted that Latin America is now the fastest growing games market in the world, thanks to improved infrastructure and increased interest in games and eSports.
Newzoo writes that the global games market will reach $196.0 billion by 2022, with PC revenue shrinking as smartphone gaming continues to grow. It's predicted that the mobile platform will be generating $95.4 billion in three years, accounting for just under half the global games market. The new generation of consoles will also contribute to the overall growth.