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"Interactive entertainment has never been so robust" - Disney

Wadsworth excited by opportunities created by a consumer-driven market

Stephen Wadsworth, president of Disney Interactive Media Group, believes that the interactive entertainment industry is in a great position to take advantage of new business methods as the market dynamics are shifting - and the younger demographics, as full digital natives, are reversing the traditional relationship between consumer and creator.

Speaking in the keynote at this year's DICE Summit in Las Vegas, he admitted that the economic situation hasn't made life easier, but by putting those considerations to one side and taking a step back, it was possible to identify a number of factors that had led to a new order - including new devices with increased capabilities and enhanced connectivity.

What this provided creators, he explained, was better tools and a broader canvass and crucially that this was consumer-driven change - because "cool gadgets alone do not create a sustainable opportunity," he explained.

But while the competition is fiercer than ever, the industry was looking at a change in the value chain from am 'acquire-monetise-engage' model to something much closer to 'acquire-engage-monetise'.

And this meant that instead of operating on a supply to demand basis, the reverse was true, and that the consumer demand was dictating the creative content being supplied - something which he sees only increasing in influence over time.

He went on to speak specifically about children as the core industry's "audience of the future" as having different attributes to the gamers most companies have appealed to in the past, specifically noting six factors: strong multi-taskers; media sponges; impatient for content; utilising multiple platforms; expecting of seamless communication; and ready to share content and experience with others.

But satisfying this demographic over time would require new skills, he warned - something he added that Disney's experience in the sector had helped them to build on.

We'll have more from Stephen Wadsworth next week, with a GamesIndustry.biz interview to be published on Monday.

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