Study: Most Gamers Still Prefer Physical Copies of Games

Tue, Jul 6, 2010

Facebook, iPhone

Despite the move to a digital future, many gamers still prefer to have physical copies of their games. The discussions have gone on for years, and the platforms and download speeds keep getting greater but that hasn’t ended the perpetual argument.

1000 people were surveyed, in which 64% of those surveyed said they would prefer a physical copy over a virtual one if offered the same game. This percentage is higher than in other mediums such as newspapers, music and movies.

The firm that conducted the survey mentions that used games are likely the reason for the great percentage. The value of the game appears to rise when buyers have the option to re-sell, trade or buy at a potential lower price because of second-hand copy availability.

According to the director at Ipsos MediaCT Ian Bramley: “Physical games discs have a long and well-established history, which is a deep mindset to change – particularly when gamers build a physical collection as they fear losing digital versions. And in-store browsing is also important to buyers.”

So, I have to beg the question. What does this possibly mean for Facebook and iPhone games? I would have to say it has little to do with these platforms. Facebook games are free-to-play and iPhone games are either extremely cheap or free so they are entirely different markets. While someone would want a physical copy for a $60 game, I think the tone would be much more different for a $.99 game you play on your phone. Also, most people would prefer not to carry around discs and switch them out every time they want to play a new game or use a new app on their phone.

I would like to see a survey conducted, but with Facebook or iPhone games as the focus. I think the results would be vastly different.

So, what do you think? Do you prefer physical or digital copies? Let us know in the comments section below.

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- who has written 807 posts on Frisky Mongoose.

Talor is a Contributing Editor at Frisky Mongoose focusing on the mobile side of the social gaming world.

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