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Gaming Hardware Booms As COVID Keeps People Home

Sales of gaming hardware soared during the pandemic, dwarfing the sales growth of non-gaming PCs and accessories.

Point-of-sale data from a new global (excluding North America) study by Growth from Knowledge (GfK), an analytics and research firm serving the consumer electronics industry, showed that gaming hardware was outpacing its non-gaming equivalents around the world.

Gaming notebook sales increased by 25 per cent, compared to 14 per cent for non-gaming, while gaming desktop PCs dwarfed others 34 per cent to three per cent. Gaming monitors outgrew other monitors 48 per cent to eight per cent, while gaming mice, keyboards, and headsets also outstripped their non-gaming equivalents.

Josh Wanderman, GfK’s Vice President of Global Market Insights, said that gaming hardware was booming even before COVID hit, a trend the pandemic only accelerated.

“With online games becoming more advanced and the rising popularity of esports and gaming generally, these devices became the go-to choices when homebound consumers saw a need to upgrade their equipment,” he said.

According to Wanderman, GfK saw gaming growth in almost every region it tracks globally, with gaming notebook sales rising by double digits in each region; the Asia-Pacific excluding China saw sales rise 32 per cent, while the biggest growth was seen in Latin America at 73 per cent.

“With more advanced software development and cloud gaming expanding, we expect the need to update hardware will always be top of mind for gaming-focused consumers,” he said.

The global data reflects similar gains for gaming in North America, with NPD Group data finding PC gaming hardware and peripherals grew 69 per cent in 2020 over pre-COVID levels.

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