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NPD Market Figures Criticized

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The Entertainment Software Association has criticized the accuracy of the market analyst NPD’s research.

A trade body from the USA that focuses on video games, the Entertainment Software Association (ESA) has said that NPD’s research does not accurately reflect the purchasing habits of millions of consumers.

This criticism came after NPD released their analysis of the market throughout 2015, in which they claimed that the industry’s value stagnated.

However, ESA claim that, because they only look at the physical consumer items sold, NPD’s figures cannot be trusted to provide a satisfactory reflection on the state of the games industry. ESA said that millions of gamers buy products through a range of sources besides physical, such as subscription services, downloads and mobile purchasing.

ESA insisted that the days of being able to assess a retailer’s capabilities by only looking at the sales of physical, boxed goods are long gone. They said that NPD’s traditionally focused model ignores the new areas of the industry that are experiencing growth

A spokesperson from NPD replied, saying that they are “fully committed” to reporting on the industry as a whole, not just one particular part of the consumers’ behaviour. They noted that NPD’s monthly data release focuses on physical sales, which they clarify is still a major part of the industry.

They stress that NPD has always made clear that their figures are not representative of the industry as a whole, and that the scope of their data—physical sales—has always been made clear.

For a full view of the games industry, it is best to examine multiple sources. Ukie and Superdata have both recently begun enterprises in which they will report on UK-dedicated digital sales data.

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