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UK has highest console usage, highest digital and physical sales in Europe

A study by US consumer tracking group NPD has revealed distinctive gaming habits for the UK, France and Germany, alongside analysis of the States.

The study first notes that whilst the combined markets of the three European countries are only around two thirds of the size of that in the US, the incidence of gaming device ownership and usage is higher per capita. The European territories also have a higher concentration of gamers aged 13-34.

Of the European countries, the UK was identified as having the highest purchase rate of both physical and digital titles, a quota almost equalled by Germany, which also has an almost divide between physical and digital spending. France had the smallest market during Q4, 2011, but was largely occupied with physical media.

Breaking the figures down by territories, the UK was identified as the territory with the heaviest console users, whilst Germany exhibited the highest rate of PC gaming. France saw more gamers using dedicated handhelds than any other device for gaming.

In the US, app devices, covering both smartphones and tablets, are the most popular gaming equipment. In America almost half of all portable game-capable devices are used for gaming.

"Digital distribution provides the games industry with an opportunity to reach consumers on a global basis faster than ever before," said NPD's Anita Frazier, presenting the study at DICE.

"Gaming is a global business and one that needs to take into account the unique dynamics within each country. It's critical for the industry to better understand these dynamics, including consumer preferences for acquiring content as well as device usage. This is information that can be used at both a strategic and tactical level in order to reduce risk."

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