Providing the most comprehensive and up-to-date information and analysis of the Emerging Gaming Technology market including the behaviours, preferences and habits of the consumer.

New gaming technology is a difficult sell for a majority of players who are satisfied with the technology that’s currently available to them. Players want to know that the investments they make will practically improve their gaming experience. Making the games the stars of the show could convince a skeptical growing audience of gamers who are wary about changing up their routines in a constantly changing video game environment.

Quickly understand

  • The impact of COVID-19 on consumer behavior and emerging gaming technology.
  • What compels gamers to invest in new hardware and services.
  • How 5G could usher in a new era for gaming services.
  • Why VR/AR are struggling with mainstream appeal, and what will boost their popularity.

Covered in this report

Brands featured: Amazon Luna, Google Stadia, Razer, Oculus, NVIDIA GeForce NOW, Facebook Gaming, Playstation VR, SteelSeries, Microsoft and more.

Expert analysis from a specialist in the field

Written by John Poelking, a leading analyst in the Technology sector, his extensive knowledge delivers in-depth commentary and analysis to highlight current trends and add expert context to the numbers.

The future of gaming is here, as innovative hardware (VR, accessories) and services (cloud gaming) are on the cusp of the mainstream. Still, it’s going to take more than a slick campaign to convince gamers to invest in new gaming technology. Compelling games and use cases should be presented as effective ways to elevate their overall experience. Incremental improvements are more appealing than a radical overhaul to the average gamer when exploring new hardware, software and services hitting the market.

John Poelking
Senior Technology Analyst

Table of Contents

  1. Overview

    • What you need to know
    • Key issues covered in this Report
    • Definition
    • COVID-19: market context
    • Economic and other assumptions
  2. Executive Summary

    • Top takeaways
    • Market overview
      • Figure 1: Emerging gaming technology ownership and interest, December 2020
    • Impact of COVID-19 on emerging gaming technology
      • Figure 2: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on emerging gaming technology, February 2021
    • Opportunities and challenges
    • Satisfied players aren’t looking for new enhancements
      • Figure 3: Attitudes toward the release of new gaming technology, December 2020
    • Seamless gameplay can immerse players in digital worlds
      • Figure 4: Important features to improve gaming experience, December 2020
    • Accessories offer incremental improvements for new and established players
      • Figure 5: Gaming accessories purchase intent, December 2020
    • Cloud gaming, social gamers set to benefit from 5G rollout
      • Figure 6: 5G interest and usage, all vs gamers and social gamers, December 2020
    • Action genres can help propel VR gaming
      • Figure 7: Ideal genres to play in VR, December 2020
  3. The Market – Key Takeaways

    • Key segments of gaming tech show promise
    • Seven in 10 adults play video games
    • New ways to game are on the horizon
    • Gamers look to enhance immersive elements and social capabilities
  4. Market Segments Overview

    • Virtual reality
    • What’s happening
    • What’s next
    • Augmented reality
    • What’s happening
    • What’s next
    • Cloud gaming
    • What’s happening
    • What’s next
    • Gaming accessories
    • What’s happening
    • What’s next
  5. Target Audience – The US Gamer

    • Who are gamers?
      • Figure 8: Profile of US gamers, by key demographics, December 2020
    • Mobile attracts the largest audience
      • Figure 9: Gaming devices used, December 2020
    • Gaming is a daily habit
      • Figure 10: Frequency of gaming and weekly hours, December 2020
    • Casual gaming is common
      • Figure 11: Reasons to play video games, December 2020
    • Puzzle and board games have the largest audience
      • Figure 12: Preferred gaming genres – Any rank, October 2020
  6. Market Factors

    • Relevant macroeconomic indicators
    • Stimulus may not be enough to encourage extra spending
      • Figure 13: Unemployment and underemployment rate, January 2019-November 2020
    • Upgrades aren’t deemed necessary amidst economic uncertainty
      • Figure 14: Tech cost-cutting measures, August 2020
    • 5G networks and smartphones are starting to hit the market
      • Figure 15: 5G smartphone adoption and interest, December 2020
    • Impact of COVID-19 on emerging gaming technology
      • Figure 16: Short-, medium- and long-term impact of COVID-19 on emerging gaming technology, February 2021
    • Lockdown
    • Re-emergence
    • Recovery
    • Learnings from the last recession
    • In-home entertainment becomes a higher priority during economic uncertainty
      • Figure 17: Consumer spending on leisure and entertainment, by market segments, at current prices, 2000-25
    • State of gaming in 2008 points to continued investments in hardware
      • Figure 18: Global unit sales of Nintendo Wii, PS3 and Xbox 360, 2006-08
  7. Market Perspective

    • Practical technology props up slowed spending in 2020
      • Figure 19: Market size and forecast of technology and communications, at current prices, 2015-25
    • Players are spending more time with games (along with other entertainment)
      • Figure 20: Changes in entertainment consumption due to COVID-19, October 2020
    • Video games among the most popular purchases during pandemic
      • Figure 21: Devices purchased due to COVID-19, August 2020
    • Free-to-play games may hurt value of gaming services
      • Figure 22: Attitudes toward free games and gaming services, 2019 vs 2020
  8. Market Opportunities

    • Immersive elements can excite early adopters
    • Promote 5G to emphasize connection over competitive edge
      • Figure 23: 5G interest and usage, all vs gamers and social gamers, December 2020
    • Offer budget versions of new tech to bring in price-conscious novices
    • Find opportunities to showcase tech in person
  9. Companies and Brands – Key Takeaways

    • Key brands look to expand market positions in 2021
    • New levels of immersion are coming
    • Practicality is more important than novelty
  10. Key Brands

    • Cloud/subscription gaming
    • Google Stadia
      • Figure 24: Google Stadia banner ad, December 2020
    • Amazon Luna
      • Figure 25: Amazon Luna Twitter post, December 2020
    • Xbox Game Pass Ultimate
      • Figure 26: Xbox Game pass banner ad, December 2020
    • NVIDIA GeForce NOW
      • Figure 27: NVIDIA GeForce NOW Twitter post, January 2020
    • Facebook Gaming
    • VR
    • Oculus
      • Figure 28: Oculus Gaming Instagram post, December 2020
    • PlayStation VR
      • Figure 29: PlayStation VR banner ad, December 2020
    • Accessories
    • Razer
      • Figure 30: Razer Instagram post, December 2020
    • SteelSeries
      • Figure 31: SteelSeries Instagram post, January 2021
  11. Innovations to Watch

    • Mobile accessories
      • Figure 32: OtterBox accessories Instagram post, January 2021
    • All-in-one gaming stations
      • Figure 33: Razer Project Brooklyn Instagram post, January 2021
    • Haptic suits
      • Figure 34: bHaptics Instagram post, December 2020
  12. Competitive Strategies

    • Acquisitions spur innovations
    • Cloud gaming services compete on exclusives, price
    • The games need to be the stars to showcase tech
      • Figure 35: Gaming hardware Facebook ads
  13. The Consumer – Key Takeaways

    • Players look to accessories for incremental improvements
    • New consoles will dominate conversation
    • 5G expansion may drive adoption of gaming services
    • Practicality trumps novelty for new tech
    • VR games will need to lean on action
    • New tech is exciting (but unnecessary) for most players
    • Segmentation highlights unique opportunities for new technology
  14. Gaming Accessories

    • Less expensive peripherals can enhance gameplay…
      • Figure 36: Gaming accessories purchase intent, December 2020
    • …and they make good gifts for tweens
      • Figure 37: Gaming accessories purchase intent, by age of children in household, December 2020
    • Advanced controllers could break through
      • Figure 38: Video game controller purchase intent, December 2020
    • 8K is still far away
      • Figure 39: Gaming monitor purchase intent, December 2020
  15. Gaming Hardware Ownership and Interest

    • New consoles will be big ticket items of 2021
      • Figure 40: Console and computer ownership and interest, December 2020
    • VR hardware has potential…
      • Figure 41: VR/AR headsets ownership and interest, December 2020
    • …especially in the console world
      • Figure 42: VR/AR headsets ownership and interest, by active gamer segments, December 2020
  16. Gaming Services

    • Gaming services still have to bridge the gap of indifference
      • Figure 43: Gaming services use and interest, December 2020
    • Console players will drive subscription service model and cloud gaming
      • Figure 44: Gaming services use and interest, by active gamer segments, December 2020
    • Cloud gaming will benefit from 5G, but 5G will be the main selling point
      • Figure 45: Attitudes toward 5G and cloud gaming, December 2020
    • 5G can be positioned to connect players
      • Figure 46: Attitudes toward 5G and cloud gaming, by Mintel gamer segments, December 2020
  17. Important Features for New Gaming Technology

    • Speedy gaming will be an important selling point
      • Figure 47: Important features to improve gaming experience, December 2020
      • Figure 48: TURF Analysis – Tech features, November 2020
    • Rural gamers missing speed, while urban players want to connect
      • Figure 49: Important features to improve gaming experience – Select items, by living area, December 2020
    • Function outshines flash in gaming hardware
      • Figure 50: Important features for gaming hardware ranked, December 2020
  18. Interest in VR Genres

    • VR can break through with action entries
      • Figure 51: Ideal genres to play in VR, December 2020
    • Console players want action in VR, computer players look for immersion
      • Figure 52: Ideal genres to play in VR, by active gamer segments, December 2020
  19. Attitudes toward New Gaming Technology

    • Excitement doesn’t always translate to early adoption
      • Figure 53: Attitudes toward the release of new gaming technology, December 2020
    • AR, cloud gaming interest are signs of early adopters
      • Figure 54: Attitudes toward new gaming technology – CHAID – Tree output, December 2020
    • Inclusion, compatibility get players excited about the future of gaming
      • Figure 55: Attitudes toward inclusion in gaming technology, December 2020
    • New gaming technology needs to justify high cost
      • Figure 56: Attitudes toward the barriers to new gaming technology, December 2020
    • Further steps toward immersion intrigue players
      • Figure 57: Attitudes toward realism in gaming, December 2020
  20. Consumer Segmentation – Emerging Gaming Technology

    • Factors
      • Figure 58: Emerging gaming technology consumer segmentation, December 2020
    • Sensible Supporters (35%)
    • Demographics
    • Characteristics
    • Opportunities
      • Figure 59: Profile of Sensible Supporters, December 2020
    • Easygoing Explorers (26%)
    • Demographics
    • Characteristics
    • Opportunities
      • Figure 60: Profile of Easygoing Explorers, December 2020
    • Active Adopters (19%)
    • Demographics
    • Characteristics
    • Opportunities
      • Figure 61: Profile of Active Adopters, December 2020
    • Peaceful Players (19%)
    • Demographics
    • Characteristics
    • Opportunities
      • Figure 62: Profile of Peaceful Players, December 2020
  21. Appendix – Data Sources and Abbreviations

    • Data sources
    • Sales data
    • Consumer survey data
    • Abbreviations and terms
    • Abbreviations
    • Terms
  22. Appendix – TURF Analysis

    • Methodology
      • Figure 63: TURF Analysis – Tech features, December 2020
  23. Appendix – CHAID Analysis

    • Methodology
      • Figure 64: Attitudes toward new gaming technology – CHAID – Table output, December 2020

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