IDC: 50 million wireless gamers by 2010

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Mobile gaming in the United States will gain steady ground over the next several years even as titles get more expensive, according to new figures from IDC.
The market research firm predicts the number of wireless gamers will grow more than 16 percent annually during the next four years, reaching nearly 50 million users by 2010. Teens and adults under the age of 24 will drive that growth, said IDC, citing a recent study that found spending on mobile games “inversely correlated with a purchaser’s age.”
Meanwhile, the price per mobile game will rise more than $2.50 by 2010 as subscription gaming services gain popularity. Carriers currently demand as much as $9 or more for popular titles but are increasingly offering monthly gaming rates for a few dollars per game.
“Flexible discovery and billing mechanisms are emerging trends making mobile game purchases easier and more attractive to consumers,” said IDC analyst Lewis Ward. “Game bundles, flat subscription fees that include access to multiple games, weekly game rentals, pay-per-play and other models today complement the standard one-time purchasing model or single-game monthly subscription model.”

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