Online Gaming Continues Growth in Both Playing and Viewing Times

Blog Post by Michael Milligan

March 18th, 2019

Limelight’s State of Online Gaming 2019 market research shows the popularity of online gaming continues to grow in both playing time as well as online viewership. Gamers are spending more time than ever playing their favorite games as well as watching others play online.


The amount of time gamers spend playing video games each week is up 19.3% since last year’s survey to 7.11 hours (seven hours, seven minutes). Nearly 20% of gamers play for more than 12 hours per week. Gamers in Germany are spending the most time playing, at just shy of 8 hours a week.



Figure 1: How many hours each week do you spend playing video games?


The largest increase is among gamers age 26-45, who are spending 25% more time playing than last year.



Figure 3: How many hours each week do you spend playing video games?
(2018 and 2019)


Women are more likely to consider themselves casual or novice gamers than men. Men are more likely to identify as aspiring professionals or experts, with more than 23% of men considering themselves to be expert gamers.



Figure 6: What type of gamer are you?


Mobile phones remain the primary device used for gaming, reflecting the popularity of mobile gaming apps. Germany was the only country in our survey where mobile phones were not the most popular gaming device, with computers leading the way.



Figure 9: How much of your total time playing video games is on the following devices?
(Scale 0-4)


Downloading remains the most popular way to acquire games in every country.



Figure 12: How do you prefer to acquire your video game?


However, nearly 85% of gamers find the process of downloading games frustrating, with download speed as the primary complaint.



Figure 15: What is the most frustrating part of downloading video games?


Casual Single-Player games remain the most popular type of game played overall. However, First-Person Shooter and Battle Royale games such as Fortnite are the first choice of gamers 18-25.



Figure 19: How much of your time playing video games is spent playing each of the following types of games?
Scale (0-4)


Not only are gamers spending more time playing their favorite games, they are also watching others play online more than ever before. Gamers globally spend more time watching traditional sports on broadcast television than they watch video gaming on sites such as Twitch and YouTube Gaming. However, gamers in Japan, Singapore, and South Korea watch online video gaming more than traditional broadcast sports.



Figure 22: How many hours each week do you do the following?


Watching online gaming is particularly popular with younger gamers. Gamers 18-25 years old spend nearly four hours each week watching online gaming. That’s 77% more time than they watch traditional sports on TV. Gamers 26-35 spend just two minutes more watching traditional sports than online gaming each week.



Figure 27: How many hours each week do you do the following?


Professional gaming is increasingly viewed as an attractive career option, particularly among younger gamers. Nearly half of gamers 18-35 would quit their jobs and turn pro if they could support themselves as professional gamers.



Figure 46: Would you quit your job if you could support yourself as a professional video game player?


Online security continues to be a major concern for gamers. More than half would stop making purchases or play games on sites that have previously been hacked or suffered a security breach.



Figure 49: Will you continue to play online games or make purchases from a gaming website that has previously experienced a security breach or been hacked?


Learn more about how Limelight’s Solution for Gaming can help you deliver the fastest and most secure online gaming experiences that keep players coming back for more.