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7 Apr

Virtual world popularity in Germany

This post examines the German marketplace for kids aged seven to 10 and the virtual worlds they claim to have used/played. The first post in this series covers the UK and the second France.

The chart below presents the findings.

Barbie Girls came out top in France and this is also the case in Germany, with 10.7% of the sample indicating usage. Club Penguin is in second place, tieing with World of Warcraft (which didn’t make a dent in the UK or France numbers). GoSupermodel and Jumpstart are in fourth and fifth position respective. Continue reading →

7 Apr

Virtual world popularity in France

Following on from our first post looking at the popularity of virtual worlds across the EU, starting with the UK, this post focuses on France. Dubit used a total sample size of 1,145 kids aged seven to 10. The data-points in the charts refer to the percentage of kids in the sample who indicate they have played/registered each virtual world. The sample was given a reasonable comprehensive list of major virtual worlds.

So, here’s the chart for France.

Whereas Club Penguin is the most popular virtual world in the UK, in France Barbie Girls comes out on top with 14.7% of the sample stating they’ve played it. Dofus, with a very strong French user base comes in at second place. The average user age for Dofus is 22, so the users featured in this analysis are at the youngest edge of the user base. Club Penguin pops in at third place for France. Continue reading →

6 Apr

EU VW research for kids aged seven to 10

Our good friends over at Dubit run regular Internet usage market research into the EU market place (with North America coming soon). Their January 2010 research has been made available to us, which means they’re added to our Xmas card list. You can follow Dubit on Twitter (for Dubit Informer) and (for the Dubit Platform).

The entire presentation will be made available on request in a day (update: the report can be ordered here) or so and for those of you looking for a peek inside, this is the first of a series of posts digging into the data. As a side-note, most people don’t realise that the EU market is the most dominant in terms of overall users in the kids and tween sectors, with conversion rates and ARPPU’s also higher than North America. We know why – do you?

The slide shown below presents the UK marketplace for boys and girls aged seven to 10.

Club Penguin leads the pack with a considerable advantage over the rest, although it’s interesting to observe the wide spread of worlds featuring in the UK market. UK-based Moshi Monsters comes in at second place with um, Farmville in third – obviously these kids are playing alongside an older brother/sister who is actually 13 or older right?!  (probably a topic for another post). Mafia Wars also features. The same (kids signing up at an age younger than the TOS) can be said for Habbo of course. Continue reading →

17 Feb

Universe and Radar presentation

Here’s a Slideshare presentation containing our Q4 2009 Universe and Radar analysis.

Q4 2009 Radar chart: Music, Fashion and Education/Development

Throughout 2009 and certainly for the majority of 2008, almost all the focus in the KT&T virtual worlds space was in casual gaming and socialising.

Now, we’re seeing a different trend, with worlds catering towards education and development being the hotspot in terms of upcoming worlds.

The chart below shows Education/Development, Fashion/Lifestyle and Music.

You can order the full report analysing growth in the virtual worlds sector here. Our report, Virtual Worlds 2010+ details the major drivers for growth in these categories. Continue reading →

16 Feb

Q4 2009 Universe chart: Teens and Adults

Our last post (assessing Kids and Tweens) showed the five to 10 year old segment and 10 to 15’s grew 17.8% and 6,8% respectively from Q3 to Q4 2009. Here, we cover the older sectors and first up virtual worlds with an average age user from 15 to 25. Here’s the Universe chart.

IMVU continues to dominate this age range, growing to 46m registered accounts in Q4. One to watch in this range is French VW Dofus, with 30m registered accounts, mainly in France. Of note, IMVU now publishes active users (concurrency) live on their site (with over 100k online at time of writing this post). Continue reading →

Q4 2009 Universe chart: Kids and Tweens

As published in our last post, the overall market of total registered users in the virtual worlds sector reached 800m in Q4 2009. Here, we delve into the younger segmented of this market, Kids and Tweens.

Virtual worlds with an average age user between five and ten reached a total of 179m in Q4, up 17.8% from 152m. The chart below contains the Universe segment for this age range.

Commentary on this age range in terms of drivers for growth and upcoming worlds is explained in this post based on the Radar. The full report on Q4 growth containing both the Universe and Radar charts can be requested here.

Here’s the segment for the ten to 15 year old group. This segment (the largest in overall size) grew 6.8% quarter on quarter from 367m to 392m. Continue reading →

Virtual world registered accounts reach 800m

For those of you not attending Engage Expo today, here’s a first look at our latest Q4 2009 virtual worlds research…… (we’ll be presenting this in the Virtual Worlds and Games by the Numbers: A look in the market research session).

At the end of Q4 2009, total registered accounts in the virtual worlds sector reached 803m. This is a 19.7% (132m) quarter on quarter increase, from 671m registered accounts in Q3. The table below breaks this out by average user age range.

Over the last four quarters on a registered accounts basis the market has almost doubled, going from 419m to 803m.

Looking at this growth by age range (the average user age), the 15 to 25 year old segment demonstrated the highest growth in Q4, representing a 65% increase from 117m to 193m. Strong performance from IMVU and Habbo drove this uplift.

Second highest growth came in the youngest age range (five to 10 year old) and as the just released Radar chart shows, this segment, in particular for virtual worlds catering to education and development is hotting up. Quarter on quarter growth in this segment was 27m, moving from 152m to 179m.

Our Universe and Radar charts have also been updated based on closing Q4 data. Here’s a post for the Universe and another for the Radar.

The full report covering growth in the virtual worlds sector can be ordered here.

Here’s (of course) a few of charts. Continue reading →

VW User Profiles: SmallWorlds

Launched in 2008, SmallWorlds currently has over 2m registered accounts and is the next in our series of looking at age profiles for virtual worlds targeting teens and older. Here’s the age profile:

smallworlds.020 The most popular user age in SmallWorlds is 14, accounting for 14% of the total. 15 and 19 years vie for second place, with early to mid 20’s also holding their own.

Again we have an interesting mini-peak at age 29. This mini-peak can also be seen in Miss Bimbo AND Club Cooee. Hmmm – interesting. Anyone got any thoughts on this?

Here’s the cumulative chart for SmallWorlds. Continue reading →

Avg user ages by country for Habbo

Here’s some insightful data recently released from Habbo. It shows the average user age by country. In the first chart we’ve colour-coded countries by major region. It’s almost per continent but we’ve broken out Scandinavia, for reasons well explained by the chart…

With an average user age of 15.9, Peru tops the chart, followed by Malaysia.

Inversely, the Netherlands has the overall lowest average user age with 13, followed by Belgium.

Can we draw conclusions from this chart. That’s what the colour-coding is for.

It would appear the the Scandinavian countries combined have a low (compared to others) average user age. Let’s remember that the parent company (Sulake) is based in Finland and was launched their first in 2000. This could imply that older target market users in these countries get into Habbo at a comparative earlier age and then migrate to older worlds – they might be a little more familiar with virtual worlds than users in countries from South American for example, that combined has an older average age.

The broad conclusion here being that the lesser developed the country or region, the higher average user age. By lesser developed we mean a lower broadband and PC penetration with a generally less internet savvy population. Of course, other factors do come into play here such as awareness of specific virtual worlds and unique nuances per country.

Here’s the chart showing aggregated average ages per major region in support of this conclusion….

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