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China’s smaller cities spend the most on video games nationally: Report

China’s smaller cities spend the most on video games nationally: Report

People visit the stand of Tencent’s mobile game ‘Glory of Kings’ during the 2020 China Digital Entertainment Expo & Conference (ChinaJoy) at Shanghai New International Expo Center on July 31, 2020 in Shanghai, China.

Zhou You | VCG via Getty Images

SINGAPORE — Video games are booming in China’s smaller cities, with citizens there accounting for more than half of revenue nationally, according to a recent report by Niko Partners.

“76% of gamers in China live in Tier 3-5 cities, accounting for 70% of game revenue,” Niko Partners said in a synopsis of its China Gamers Report.

Cities in China are classified by tiers based loosely on population and economic size. For example, places such as capital Beijing and Shenzhen are generally considered tier-one cities, while lower-tier cities are smaller.

The country is the world’s top game market and will generate an estimated $40.85 billion in revenue this year, according to Newzoo.

“What we think is happening with the smaller tiers is … there are more and more gamers adapting to uses of mobile devices,” Lisa Cosmas Hanson, founder and president of Niko Partners, told CNBC in a follow-up interview.

With “fewer things to do for entertainment” in smaller cities as compared with their cosmopolitan peers in Beijing and Shanghai, “gamers spend their time with little cost entertainment which can be social.”

This could also be attributable to improved mobile data and broadband infrastructure, Hanson added, with “lots of Android smartphones available at lower price points.”

In a country of 1.4 billion people, even China’s smallest “cities” can have a population of more than 1 million each.

For video game publishers looking at China, the analyst said: “If you really want to draw the attention of people throughout the country, Tier 4, Tier 5, these places can’t be ignored.”

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GameStop, Microsoft partnership sends games retailer’s shares up 44%

GameStop, Microsoft partnership sends games retailer’s shares up 44%

  • GameStop shares rose 44% on Thursday after it announced a multiyear partnership with Microsoft.
  • GameStop will begin selling an “Xbox All Access” bundle stores, with an Xbox console and two-year digital subscription at no upfront cost.
  • It will roll out the use of Microsoft Dynamics 365, Teams, and Surface devices in its stores and offices, it said.
  • GameStop will also upgrade its e-commerce site as part of the partnership.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

GameStop on Thursday announced a multiyear partnership with Microsoft to upgrade its stores and offer a new Xbox console package for no up-front cost — sending its shares rocketing by 44%.

As part of the partnership, the world’s biggest video games retailer said it would offer buyers an “Xbox All Access” bundle, for zero upfront cost, that includes an Xbox console and a two-year digital subscription to Xbox Game Pass Ultimate, Microsoft’s “Netflix of gaming” subscription service.

Microsoft did not name a specific Xbox console that would be part of the bundle in a statement, but said that it was “excited about continuing and evolving [the] relationship for the launch of the Xbox Series” consoles, due November 10. 

GameStop will also upgrade its e-commerce site as part of the agreement.

It will integrate Microsoft’s cloud software and hardware into its stores to create what it calls the “ultimate gaming destination” for gamers. GameStop has more than 5,000 stores in 10 countries. It didn’t say how many of these stores would be upgraded.

GameStop will use Dynamics 365, Microsoft’s suite of cloud-based business applications, to standardize its back-end and in-store operations including finance, inventory, e-commerce, retail, and point of sale. 

Staff would be able to access insights spanning both e-commerce and in-store sales data, Microsoft said. This includes customer purchasing history, real-time data on product

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