Global: Most popular gaming devices
February 1st, 2022, Rishad Dsouza

Global: Most popular gaming devices

PCs and smartphones remain the most popular gaming devices in markets across the globe. When it comes to dedicated gaming consoles, it’s a stiff battle between the Nintendo Switch and the Sony PS4 for top spot, according to data from YouGov Profiles.

PCs (laptops or desktops) are the most popular gaming device in Australia and China, where a quarter of gamers (24%) play video games on Windows-based desktops or laptops. Gamers in this piece are defined as those who play video games for at least 30 minutes each week.

On the other hand, cell phones are the most commonly used gaming devices among Americans and Brits, used by more than a third of gamers (36%) in each of those markets. Windows-based computers are used as gaming devices by a sizeable chunk of the American audience (25%) but dip in popularity among British gamers (20%).

Among gaming-dedicated devices, the Sony PS4 and Nintendo Switch are popular options across markets. Just under a fifth of Australians (17%) who play video games for at least 30 minutes weekly use the PS4. The Nintendo Switch is used by just over a tenth of gamers (12%) there.

In the US, about one in seven gamers use each of the two devices (14%). A similar proportion of British gamers use the two devices, with the Switch (15%) only slightly ahead of the PS4 (13%).

It’s only among gamers in China that the popularity of both devices slips somewhat noticeably. While the Switch (8%) still makes the top five list, the PS4 (4%) drops out of the top bracket.

How are the latest offerings from Xbox and PlayStation performing?

About one in 20 gamers (5%) in Australia say they use the Sony PlayStation 5 at least once a month. The Xbox Series S (2%) and the Xbox Series X (1%), which were released side-by-side in late 2020, are cumulatively used by 3% of Aussie gamers.

In the US, 7% of gamers use the PS5 at least once a month. The Series X (4%) and the Series S (3%) consoles jointly account for a similar market share. It must be noted that the sales of the latest models may have been hampered by global chip shortages.

With Microsoft’s recent acquisition of Activision Blizzard for a record US$68.7 billion dollars, it will be interesting to see whether and how the company leverages the deal to increase Xbox usership in the months to come.

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Methodology: YouGov Profiles is based on continuously collected data and rolling surveys, rather than from a single limited questionnaire. Profiles data is nationally representative and weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race. Learn more about Profiles.