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At the rate the gaming population is growing among kids ages 2-17, it won't be long before there will be more child and teen gamers than there are children and teens. Wait, that can't be right. But what is right, according to The NPD Group, is that the population growth of kids ages 2-17 increased 1.54 percent in the U.S. since 2009, while the gaming population of that same age group grew 12.68 percent.
More than 9 out of 10 kids (91 percent, or 64 million) are gamers living in the U.S., NPD says. That's an increase of 9 points overall since 2009, with kids ages 2-5 jumping 17 points in gaming incidence.
"Year-to-date through August 2011, kids comprised 44 percent of new physical software dollar sales, representing a vitally important consumer segment for the games industry," said Anita Frazier, industry analyst, The NPD Group. "Knowing how kids are spending their gaming time and dollars in both traditional and non-traditional outlets is key to staying relevant to this highly engaged audience."
Gaming on mobile devices like smartphones and tablets jumped 8 percent to 38 percent, compared to traditional portable gaming devices, which grew from 38 percent to 45 percent. The other popular platform? Computers, according to NPD.