Video Game Spending Up to Nearly $28B in U.S. Despite Falling Hardware Sales

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Strong performances from titles such as 'GTA Online' and 'Fortnite' have helped buoy the industry as the current generation of consoles enter their terminal stages (except Nintendo's Switch, which continues to show sales growth).

Overall video game spending in the U.S. is up slightly from 2018, the NPD Group reports. As of September, consumer spending on gaming software and hardware hit $27.9 billion, a marginal, 1 percent increase year-over-year.

As has been the trend all year, software sales were the main source of revenue, with digital console content, mobile and subscription spending seeing a double-digit increase in 2019, while hardware and physical copies of software have decreased. There has also been a decline in digital content spending on PC platforms.

Overall spending on content hit $8.1 billion in Q3 2019 (July-September), up 3 percent year-over-yer, while year-to-date spending was up to $24.7 billion, also up 3 percent from 2018.

Strong performances from titles such as Fortnite, GTA Online, Borderlands 3, Madden 20, NBA 2K20 and Pokémon Go drove spending in Q3.

Meanwhile, on the hardware side, the growth in sales of Nintendo's Switch family of consoles could not offset a 22 percent decline in overall spending, down to $575 million in Q3. Year-to-date, hardware spending is down 23 percent to $1.9 billion. The decline is not surprising given the late stages of the current console generation (both the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 debuted in 2013 and both companies have new consoles set to bow next holiday season).