More than Half of U.S. Adults are Gamers

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A new study published by the Pew Internet & American Life Project finds that some 53 percent of American adults play video games of some sort, whether on a computer, online, using a game console, or on a phone or other portable gaming device. However, age is still the single biggest demographic factor in gaming among adults, with younger adults far more likely to spend time gaming than their elders.

The study also found that age plays a role in an adult gamer’s choice of gaming platform, with some 75 percent of young adults aged 18 to 29 preferring game consoles, compared to 68 percent of adults in the same age group who use computers. However, adults in general skew towards gaming on computers, with 73 percent all adult gamers using computers to play games compared to 53 percent who use consoles.

Overall, 35 percent of adult gamers play using cell phones, and 25 percent use portable gaming devices.

The study also found that adult men are somewhat more likely to play video games than adult women (55 percent compared to 50 percent), and about 56 percent of adults living in urban areas are likely to game, compared to 47 percent of adults in rural areas. Education levels also factor in, with 57 percent of adults with at least some college education playing video games, compared to 51 percent who are high school graduates and just 40 percent of adults who have less than a high school education.

Adults also report little interest in virtual worlds and MMORPGS. Some 6 percent report having created an avatar of some sort for online games or social networks, but just 2 percent of adults gamers reporting the have visited a virtual world like Second Life, and only 9 percent report having played MMOGs like World of Warcraft.

In comparison, a recent Pew survey found that essentially every teenager—some 97 percent—is a gamer.

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