Video games are a big industry in Mexico. Video games are a big industry in Mexico.

Video gaming worth 22bn pesos in 2016

An estimated 47 million Mexicans play video games

Slow growth does not appear to apply to the video game industry in Mexico, which was worth 22.8 billion pesos (US $1.2 billion) last year, double what it generated seven years ago.

Video game players, of which there are currently an estimated 47 million, have kept the industry growing at double-digit levels since 2009, when it registered 11.3 billion pesos in revenue, according to data compiled by The Competitive Intelligence Unit (CIU), a consultancy.

Between 2015 and 2016 alone it grew by just over 13%, whereas Mexico’s GDP grew only 2.3% in the same period.

A researcher at the political sciences school of the National Autonomous University of México (UNAM) highlighted Mexico’s advantageous position in this particular industry.

“As technologies become more accessible, the country’s opportunities to produce, assemble and commercialize video games increase,” José Ángel Garfias told the newspaper Milenio.

This, he continued, is despite the control that big firms like Microsoft, Sony and Nintendo have over the market as well as several technological handicaps.

The potential exists to develop independent and alternative games because “the industry is not as walled-in as it once was to one producer or platform.”

The strongest sector in the video game market is that of dedicated consoles and all the accessories and add-ons consumers must purchase to fully enjoy their gaming experience.

According to CIU, Microsoft’s three consoles, Xbox, Xbox 360 and Xbox One, have a comfortable 58% share of the market, followed by Sony’s three iterations of the Play Station with 24%. Nintendo’s two Wii consoles represent 18%.

On average, consumers spend 5,350 pesos for a console, and about 622 pesos for each game.

An analyst at CIU told Milenio that the growth of the gaming industry in Mexico is not due just to diehard console fans (only 24% of the population has access to the rather expensive consoles and games) but to mobile players.

Mobile phone games have represented a big boost for the industry, said Fernando Esquivel, particularly as the devices have become increasingly more powerful.

CIU found that 71% of gamers, as video game players are called, prefer mobile devices, compared to 26% that prefer consoles. Only 15% opted for the old industry flagship, the desktop computer.

Taking these different platforms and consumer habits into consideration, CIU calculated that a typical gamer in Mexico spends anywhere between 800 and 1,000 pesos per month on new games or subscriptions to them.

Source: Milenio (sp)

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