$5.9 billion, total consumer spend in the first quarter of 2012 was down to $3.40 billion. With rapidly declining sales, things may continue to get worse before they recover.
The 'Q1 2012 Games Market Dynamics: U.S.' report reveals that while spend on new physical software was on the decline versus last year – with Q1 2012 achieving an estimated $1.5 billion spent on new video and PC game software tracked by the NPD Group – total spend on other forms of physical software, such as used games and rentals, only saw a minimal drop.
"The declines in the physical market for new physical software are well documented," NPD analyst Anita Frazier said, noting that "broader view of the industry" showed other forms of physical spend, specifically the used game and rental market, "declined by just five percent and digital format content sales grew by 10 percent as compared to Q1 2011." The one-two punch of used games and rentals reached an estimated $525 million in Q1 2012, the report says.
"While the growth in digital format sales does not yet offset the declines in physical format sales, clearly the changes occurring within the industry are reflected in the trends we are seeing in the research," Frazier added.