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Female consumers helping to drive game downloads, says analyst

Mature gamers overtaking teenagers as key mobile users

Female consumers are downloading more mobile game content and helping to expand sales in the US by around 30 per cent year-on-year, according to M: Metrics' Seamus McAteer.

And while marketing departments continue to chase the teenage dollar, the analyst points to market growth via older consumers, in a column for

"Of particular note is the shifting demographic profile for active mobile content consumers. The number of females consuming ringtones and games grew by 27 per cent and 21 per cent, respectively, year over year," wrote McAteer.

"While males still have a higher propensity to download games, the ratio of male to female game downloaders has dropped from 61 per cent male in 2005 to 54 percent male in 2006," he added.

Drawing comparisons with online casual gaming, McAteer pointed to older consumers overtaking teenagers as key market drivers.

"While much of the focus of the mobile entertainment sector has been on seeking to engage over-stimulated teens and young adults, it is clearly evident that growth in the market is coming from older demographic groups," he said.

"While starting from a smaller base, the 35 to 44-year-old segment has had the highest growth for games and ringtones. Consumption among teens has lagged, with the number of teen ringtone purchasers remaining relatively flat, while teens engaged in downloading games fell by a whopping 30 per cent," highlighted McAteer.

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