podcasts Market Intelligence /marketintelligence/en/news-insights/podcasts/mediatalk-episode-16 content
Log in to other products

Login to Market Intelligence Platform

 /


Looking for more?

Contact Us

Request a Demo

You're one step closer to unlocking our suite of comprehensive and robust tools.

Fill out the form so we can connect you to the right person.

If your company has a current subscription with S&P Global Market Intelligence, you can register as a new user for access to the platform(s) covered by your license at Market Intelligence platform or S&P Capital IQ.

  • First Name*
  • Last Name*
  • Business Email *
  • Phone *
  • Company Name *
  • City *
  • We generated a verification code for you

  • Enter verification Code here*

* Required

Thank you for your interest in S&P Global Market Intelligence! We noticed you've identified yourself as a student. Through existing partnerships with academic institutions around the globe, it's likely you already have access to our resources. Please contact your professors, library, or administrative staff to receive your student login.

At this time we are unable to offer free trials or product demonstrations directly to students. If you discover that our solutions are not available to you, we encourage you to advocate at your university for a best-in-class learning experience that will help you long after you've completed your degree. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

In This List

MediaTalk Episode 16: State of the video game industry amid COVID-19 – S&P Podcast

Top 10 VR Games By Revenue

US Operators Bolster Downward Trajectory for US Cable Capex Forecast

Ad agencies struggle to survive second quarter of 2020

Video Supply-Side Platforms Hurt By Q2'20 Fall In Video Ads, Rebounding In 2021

Listen: MediaTalk Episode 16: State of the video game industry amid COVID-19 – S&P Podcast

As companies and businesses around the globe continue to grapple with financial losses amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the video game sector has remained an outlier.

People sheltering at home due to the pandemic increasingly turned to video games, resulting in revenue spikes for gaming firms and record sales for consoles, speakers said on the latest episode of "MediaTalk," an S&P Global Market Intelligence podcast.

Neil Barbour, an analyst tracking the technology and media sectors at Kagan, a media research group within S&P Global Market Intelligence, said the second quarter was the best non-holiday period for Nintendo Co. Ltd.'s Switch console, with 5.7 million units shipped. In addition, Microsoft Corp. doubled its Xbox shipments year over year. Gaming software companies including Activision Blizzard Inc.Electronic Arts Inc. and Take-Two Interactive Software Europe Ltd also experienced double-digit revenue growth in the second quarter.

"That is noteworthy because there weren't a lot of new games from these companies," Barbour said. "All three of those companies made basically as much revenue as they make in a typical fourth quarter when they release their big, new games."

One game that stood out since its launch in March is Nintendo's Animal Crossing, which has outperformed most of the company's largest franchises on the Switch and helped made Switch the best-selling console amid the pandemic.

Ian Hughes, a senior research analyst for the Internet of Things practice at S&P Global Market Intelligence's 451 Research, said the social aspects of the game resulted in one household buying multiple Switch devices, further boosting the console's appeal for consumers.

The video game industry is on the cusp of a brand new generation of hardware, software and services, as Microsoft and Sony Corp. gear up to release their new consoles in early November. Although the high-end models of both consoles are more expensive than their predecessors, both speakers said that economic repercussions from the pandemic would not impact sales, as the gaming industry has historically proven to be recession-free.

According to full-year 2020 console shipment estimates by Kagan, Sony is expected to end the year with the second-most sales, at 10.9 million units, comprised of 7.4 million PS4 consoles and 3.5 million PlayStation 5 consoles. Microsoft is forecast to come in third with 5.6 million shipments, including 2.8 million Xbox One consoles and 2.8 million Xbox Series X consoles.

Barbour said he does not expect demand for the new consoles to be lower than it was in 2013 when their predecessors were launched but cautioned that there may be constraints in manufacturing and shipping due to the pandemic. "That said, you got to give the PlayStation a slight edge, just because of its global appeal at this point," he explained. "And whoever wins that war, you got to imagine, gets the lead at the end of the year, just because I think there's enough demand to go around for both consoles at this point."

Hughes added that Microsoft's recent $7.5 billion purchase of ZeniMax Media Inc. may switch some consumers toward the Xbox brand. "That was a clear play to say, look, we've got a lot of serious gaming stuff going on here," he said. "But I agree it can go either way."

Listen on Apple Podcasts or Soundcloud.

Learn more about Market Intelligence
Request Demo

No content (including ratings, credit-related analyses and data, valuations, model, software or other application or output therefrom) or any part thereof (Content) may be modified, reverse engineered, reproduced or distributed in any form by any means, or stored in a database or retrieval system, without the prior written permission of Standard & Poor's Financial Services LLC or its affiliates (collectively, S&P).