As the gaming landscape expands, particularly in India, it is unlocking more career opportunities. As many as one in three respondents believe gaming can be considered as their main career option, according to the just released HP India Gaming Landscape Study 2022.
A similar sized demographic believes that gaming can also be considered a part-time career option. Interestingly, more women are considering gaming too, as a viable career, beyond just a casual skill.
It is perhaps not a surprise that video games, irrespective of the device they are being played on or the genre of games, are also considered as a source of entertainment & relaxation (92%), improving mental agility (58%) and socialising (52%). But this is where things take a more serious turn.
The study indicates that 33% of all gamers would consider gaming as the primary career, while 27% wouldn’t consider these as a career prospect. This changes slightly with women gamers – about 29% of women believe this can be the main career, 27% believe gaming can be a part time career while 39% believe gaming isn’t at all a career opportunity. For males, the latter figure is around 29%.
“As the gaming industry in India evolves, it is promising to see gaming being considered as a career option,” says Vickram Bedi, Senior Director, Personal Systems, HP India.
“The PC gaming landscape in India offers a tremendous opportunity for the youth and we, at HP, are committed to support gamers in their journey by providing knowledge, tools, and opportunities to upskill and help them become better at their game through OMEN community initiatives,” he adds.
HP says the research emerges from a sample size of more than 2000 respondents, in 14 Indian cities of which 25% are females. The towns covered are a mix of Tier-I and Tier-II towns, including Delhi/NCR, Mumbai, Bangalore, Guwahati, Chennai, Kolkata, Bengaluru, Hyderabad, Pune, Lucknow, Jaipur, Ahmedabad, Ludhiana, and Bhopal.
The platform skew in these research sample numbers lean towards PC gamers (60%) with the rest being mobile gamers. The report considers a serious gamer as someone who plays video games for at least 8 hours every week, and also has active participation in online gaming competitions as well as commercial activity.
Among the demographic which considers gaming as a viable career, the lure comes from good earnings prospects (72%), turning a hobby into a profession (63% and flexibility in career (54%). Things change a little in terms of priorities for women gamers – hobby becoming a career (50%), good earnings prospects (45%) and excitement and fun (40%) are the primary reasons for the consideration.
But a career in gaming doesn’t mean specifically being a gamer. Across genders, 53% of those interested in gaming careers actually want to be gamers themselves. As many as 20% would prefer the role of an influencer in the gaming ecosystem, while 18% would want to become software developers. With streaming on social media platforms grabbing considerable eyeballs, 8% of the demographic would consider that as a priority. Surprisingly, only 2% would take up the career as an animator in the gaming space.
Earlier this year, a report by research firm KPMG indicated that the mobile gaming industry in India has clocked around ₹136 billion in revenue in 2021 and predicted that to be as high as ₹290 billion by the year 2025. The user base, presently at around 433 million, will rise to about 657 million mobile gamers, in the same period.
Mobile gaming in India is driven by the freemium model, which often lets users download a game for free with optional subscription or in-game purchases to unlock additional elements. There are also the all-you-can-game buffets which are becoming popular – Apple Arcade and Google Play Pass being primary examples.
This data sits quite in contrast with HP India Gaming Landscape Study 2022, which not only indicates a strong preference for PC as a preferred gaming platform, but also more mobile gamers who are actively considering also adding a PC to their gaming routine. “The strong preference for PC gaming represents a massive business opportunity for us,” says HP’s Bedi.
According to the report, as many as 68% of the respondents believe gaming is better on PC than on mobile. That should essentially be no surprise, given the skew towards PC gamers, which we have illustrated earlier. Still around 20% believe gaming is better on mobile than PCs while 12% believe both device categories are equally matched.
Mind you, this is a slight reduction of the preference stats, compared with HP’s report from 2021 – then, as high as 75% respondents had voiced preference for PCs as the gaming platform over mobile.
Another reason for the preference for PCs is the belief that the platform offers more, and better games (82%) and that PCs allow the flexibility of additional peripherals (57%). These would refer to accessories such as gaming monitors and better controllers (57%).