When they’re not playing themselves, more gamers are watching video game content. And while Twitch will remain a big part of servicing that audience with live streams and archived content, a recent infographic from Newzoo indicates that YouTube makes up a tremendous part of that traffic.
Over 500 million gamers will be tuning in to YouTube for gaming videos this year, according to the study. A majority of these will come from the Asian Pacific market, rounding at nearly 200 million regular viewers.
Other pertinent statistics include:
- Over 470 million gamers watch online gaming content on a regular basis. That accounts for 56 percent of all gamers across North and Latin America, Europe and Asia Pacific.
- Audience size is expected to grow past the 500 million mark within 2016.
- Online video is more than twice as effective at reaching big spenders than television is; 35 percent use YouTube to discover new games, whereas only 14 percent discover new titles via TV commercials.
- The average viewer of gaming content on YouTube is a 28 year old male who has a high income.
- YouTube is the largest platform for VOD game content and half of U.S. gamers watch it more than once a month. Twitch, the most popular live game streaming platform, has the highest reach in Latin and North America.
Despite competition from Twitch, the report notes that YouTube “still dominates around the globe” by at least a 2:1 margin. In the U.S., half of all gamers watch videos on a consistent basis on Google’s video channel, compared to 21 percent watching them on Twitch. These numbers show even greater difference overseas. In France, for example, 49 percent of gamers watch YouTube on a regular basis, while only 9 percent tune in to Twitch.
“Online video is the biggest thing to hit the games market since the launch of the iPhone in 2007,” Newzoo CEO Peter Warman said of the study. “Games are evolving toward cross-screen transmedia franchises right now. A direct consequence is the increased focus on communities of both gamers and viewers. This is creating enormous new growth and marketing opportunities for game companies and will accelerate the disruption of traditional media.”
That said, Twitch is certainly no slouch, as Newzoo also notes, via Games Industry that, “While it is correct that YouTube is watched by a much higher group of gamers than Twitch, the difference between the two platforms should be clearly stated (VOD vs. Live) to provide a fairer comparison.”
This follows Twitch’s recent report regarding record numbers for 2015, which shows that it’s a strong competitor to YouTube, even with these statistics.
The streaming platform is also looking into expanding its video playback feature, which could potentially sway more viewers in its favor.