U.S. games market accelerates to new 13-year high

Per NPD, next-gen consoles, Switch, and current-gen hardware sales propel U.S. market trends to highest point in last 13 years.

1 minute & 26 seconds read time

Thanks to pandemic spending, software sales, and strong hardware adoption, last month was the United States' best-earning March month in history.

U.S. games market accelerates to new 13-year high 16

The NPD Group just published their results for March 2021 U.S. market earnings, showing growth over 2020's monumental highs. Last month, the U.S. market spent a record $5.6 billion on games, hardware, and accessories, up 18% from March 2020's previous record highs of $4.75 billion.

NPD analyst Mat Piscatella attributes this growth to increased game sales and content, which accounted for 82% of total monthly spending, or $4.6 billion.

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Hardware likewise saw a sales spike. Piscatella says U.S. hardware sales hit $680 million, up 47% over 2020 and a new all-time high for March since 2008.

Nintendo Switch held the top spot for March 2021 in terms of overall console sales and revenues earned, but the PlayStation 5 is still the fastest-selling console of all time in the United States in terms of revenues/unit sales in first 5 months on market.

Read Also: Spider-Man Miles Morales US sales beat Last of Us 2, Ghost of Tsushima

Here are more notes from NPD Group analyst Mat Piscatella on the U.S. March 2021 results:

Mar 2021 US NPD THREAD - March 2021 consumer spending across video game hardware, content, and accessories reached a March record $5.6 billion, 18% higher when compared to a year ago. First quarter consumer spending totaled $14.9 billion, 30% higher than 2020's first quarter.

US NPD Spend Trend - Monthly sales are now comparable to year-ago periods that were impacted by pandemic-driven consumer spending increases. March 2021 gains in hardware, accessory and content sales (particularly Mobile) pushed the market to growth despite the elevated comp.

March video game hardware dollar sales were 47% higher than a year ago, at a March record $680 million. The previous high of $552 million was set in March 2008. Year-to-date hardware spending totaled $1.4 billion, an increase of 81% compared to a year ago.

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Derek joined the TweakTown team in 2015 and has since reviewed and played 1000s of hours of new games. Derek is absorbed with the intersection of technology and gaming, and is always looking forward to new advancements. With over six years in games journalism under his belt, Derek aims to further engage the gaming sector while taking a peek under the tech that powers it. He hopes to one day explore the stars in No Man's Sky with the magic of VR.

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