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2009 Today's Gamers International Survey

Americans spend more time and money on gaming than their European cousins, survey reports.

DALLAS - Nov. 5, 2009

TNS,, and SPIL GAMES today announced the launch of the 2009 Today's Gamers International Survey results for the U.S. market. The survey focuses on demographics, time and money spent, and gaming trends across Europe and the United States involving all game platforms.

According to the survey, American men and women spend significantly more time and money on video games than their European counterparts. Of the U.S. citizens polled, 83% play video games and many rank it as their favorite pastime ahead of popular activities like surfing on the Internet and watching television. By comparison, only 72% of Europeans polled play games, a percentage shared by American respondents ages 50 and above.

Despite popular misconceptions, the gap between genders is minimal in every age group, with 80% of U.S. females and 87% of U.S. males admitting to playing games. Platform popularity, however, varies widely between genders, with 54% of all American females polled playing on game portals, clearly outnumbering the men (44%). Of the female game portal players over 20 years old, 46% work full-time, part-time, or are self-employed, and 59% are married.

Games are particularly popular with the younger age groups, with American boys between the ages of 8-12 years old spending a staggering average of 13 hours of gaming per week. By comparison, they only spend an average of 10.2 hours watching television and an average of 9.1 hours using the Internet. In the European countries polled, television remains the top activity among 8-12 year olds.

Where people spend their money (e.g., in-game, online, retail), what they spend it on (e.g. subscriptions, downloads, micropayments), and how they pay (e.g. credit card, PayPal, transfer) varies widely between the countries polled, with the U.S. leading in money spent per person on console games, mobile content, and online game portals. Of all money spent on games in the U.S., 57% is spent on games for the console platform. 36% of U.S. console game players spend more than $25 USD per month on this platform, versus 14% of U.K. console game players. Conversely, French and British players spend the most money per capita on MMOs, the total adding up to 10% and 11% of the nation-wide gaming budgets respectively. Germans are most likely to spend money on stand-alone PC titles, taking in 36% of the total German gamers’ wallet.

The study also reveals that gaming on social networks and mobile devices is claiming a significant position among traditional game platforms, especially in the US. While only 10% of European game portal users see social networks as their preferred game destination, the number jumps to a stunning 24% in the U.S. — proof that social networks are quickly becoming an essential part of the gaming industry. Additionally, the research report reveals that 17% of Americans play mobile games, and 48% of those surveyed said they have paid for games. According to the study, 18% of U.S. mobile gamers spend more than $10 USD per month on games.

To download high resolution graphs, country summary reports and an overview of Today’s Gamers reports and data , please visit

To view the international and US graphs online, please visit

Note to editors

The 2009 Today’s Gamers International Survey ( is the latest in a series of identical, nation-wide surveys conducted by TNS and in the Netherlands, France, Germany, the United Kingdom, Belgium, and the United States. Data for the 2009 edition was collected from a total of 13,000 respondents, selected to represent the nations demographic profile. The interviews were conducted online, therefore the results represent the population with internet access. Other topics in the survey include full breakdowns by demographic, general interest, buying intent, media consumption, local media channel preferences, motivation to play, payment methods, digital distribution, number of games played, game platform selection, most appreciated features, and betting/gambling participation. Five firms were partners in the survey's development: RealGames (Zylom), Keesing Games, RTL Group, GamePoint, and SPIL GAMES. Both the national and international comparative reports are currently available, as well as raw data for custom queries.

About TNS NIPO Technology and

TNS NIPO Technology conducts ICT market research related to developments in the areas of internet, telephone communication, and consumer electronics for both the consumer and business sectors. TNS, who recently merged with Research International, is the world’s largest custom research agency. is the leading international B2B portal for game sourcing, prospects, partnerships, jobs, and investment opportunities related to the games industry. It provides matchmaking services and assistance to investors, advertisers, traditional publishers, and media firms entering or participating in this dynamic market. also publishes authoritative market intelligence on games and gamers.

Please state TNS/ as a source when distributing findings from this publication.


Based in the Netherlands, SPIL GAMES owns and operates a global family of web properties dedicated to online casual games. With 50 localized online game destinations in up to 20 languages, SPIL GAMES is ranked as a Top 50-most visited online property in the world, according to comScore Media Metrix, and attracts more than 115 million unique visitors to its websites worldwide. A deep understanding of the online games market enables SPIL GAMES to produce localized websites, such as (family), (tweens), (teens), and (girls). For more information, please visit:

Thijs Hagoort / Peter Warman, Co-founders

+31 (0)6 46 74 67 50 / +31 (0)6 15 85 50 37 /


Caspar Hautvast, Research Director Technology

+31 (0)20 522 5757

SPIL GAMES , Global PR Contact

Gina M. Dunn, Head of Communications for SPIL GAMES

+31 (0)35-6466328

SPIL GAMES , North America

Eddiemae Jukes, TriplePoint on behalf of SPIL GAMES and

+001 415 955 8500

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