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India’s gaming community is displaying a growing preference for PC gaming, according to a study conducted by HP. The HP India Gaming Landscape Report 2021 has revealed that 89% respondents believe that a PC offers a better gaming experience than a smartphone.

More importantly, 4 in 10 (37%) mobile gamers indicated that they would migrate to a PC for gaming, for a much better experience.

In India, where PC penetration is limited compared to mobile phones, this represents a tremendous growth opportunity for the PC gaming industry. The preference for moving to PCs for gaming was led by Millennials and Gen Z respondents (70%), as well as by Casual and Enthusiast Gamers (75%)

. An overwhelming 94% respondents across Tier 2 cities, 88% across Tier 1, and 87% in metro cities prefer PCs over mobile phones for gaming.

Respondents highlighted the following attributes as their top reasons for preferring PCs over mobiles for gaming:

  • Better processing speed, display and sound are amongst the top reasons for gamers to migrate to PC gaming.

Gaming as Career Option:

Gaming has also emerged as a viable career opportunity with over 90% respondents agreeing that gaming industry is a viable career option. As surprising it may sound, but 84% of all women respondents want to pursue gaming as career, followed by 80% of male respondents, along with Gen X (91%) and School Students (88%).

Respondents from Tier 2 cities (84%) appeared more likely to choose a career in the gaming industry than those from Metro cities (78%).

The following highlights preference for gaming as a career in the future across demography:

  • Women, GenZ, respondents from Western India, and Tier 2 towns have a high affinity for gaming as a career.

Ketan Patel, Managing Director – HP India Market, said, “With people spending more time at home, gaming has seen a dramatic rise, as consumers look to find new avenues for entertainment, stress release and social connect.

“In this scenario, the PC has emerged as the preferred device that provides the most comprehensive gaming experience. The shift from mobiles to PCs by gamers clearly represents a massive business opportunity for HP.

“Gaming is among the fastest growing segments in our PC portfolio and we expect to continue this momentum and consolidate our position as the leading PC gaming brand in India,” Patel said.

Apart from gaming, survey respondents highlighted entertainment (54%), photo / video editing (54%) and graphic design (48%), as other key tasks that they performed on their PCs – highlighting the versatility of PCs with gaming capabilities.

Gaming as stress buster:

Another finding from the HP India Gaming Landscape Report 2021 is the rise of PC gaming as a stress buster and a tool to connect with friends and family, especially during the prevalent challenge of limited social interaction.

Over 92% respondents agreed that gaming helps relieve work / study pressure while reducing stress and inducing positive feelings. In addition, 91% believe that gaming fosters better peer-level socialising and helps make new friends. Similarly, 91% respondents also believe that gaming boosts attention and concentration levels.

Vickram Bedi, Sr. Director, Personal Systems – HP India Market, said, “In recent times, the importance of technology in maintaining social connect and aiding in positive mental health has become paramount. Gaming has emerged as a wholesome activity that the entire family can participate and connect with friends and family. PC Gaming is now a global phenomenon, and careers opportunities in the industry are immense. This not only represents a big opportunity for India to shine on the global stage, but also highlights the immense value that the PC brings as device, with its all-round capabilities.”

Consumer Preferences While Buying a PC

The survey also touched on users’ key preferences in selecting a PC, especially for gaming. One third of all PC users surveyed (33%) prefer gaming features while making their purchase decision. Better processing speed (65%) and graphics capabilities (64%) were the key consumer considerations while choosing a gaming PC.

The top responses for developments, areas and future enhancements in PC gaming are as below:

  • Gamers expect better graphics, batteries, and more immersive displays and thermal innovations in gaming PCs.

In summary, the HP India Gaming Landscape Report 2021 establishes PC gaming as a mainstream activity in India and underscores the role of a PC in human society, especially during the pandemic. Not only are increasing audiences across demographics leaning towards PC gaming, it is also a preferred tool for enhancing social connect and relieving stress.

Methodology

In total, 1,500 respondents completed the survey between March and April 2021, across 25 Metros, Tier-1 and Tier-2 cities across India. Interviews were conducted with a mix of male (72%) and female (28%) respondents between the ages of 15-40 years, representing SEC A1, A2 and B1 segments. All respondents were PC and/or mobile phone users, comprising action and adventure games on PCs and smartphones.