Germany is becoming a country of gamers

Every third German plays computer games, according to a survey published Wednesday by the German Association for Information Technology, Telecommunications and New Media (Bitkom).

In the active gaming group of 14 to 29 year olds, more than two thirds of all Germans play computer games, according to Bitkom, which conducted the survey in collaboration with the market research company Ipsos.

But even in the age group 50 plus, 19 percent of Germans claim to be gamers.

To put these numbers into perspective, Germany has a population of around 82.5 million of which around 89 percent are German citizens.

While 31 percent of Germans prefer to play games on their PCs, 10 percent favor consoles and 7 percent mobile phones.

Currently, around 30 percent of all German households have a gaming console, compared to 81 percent with a cell phone and 77 percent with a PC.

Internet games are becoming increasingly popular, according to Bitkom. Nearly 60 percent of gamers in the 14 to 29 age group say they play games on the Internet. And around 68 percent of these say they play at least once a week.

Growing sales have accompanied the strong interest in computer games. Bitkom estimates that sales of computer games and consoles this year will increase 21 percent to €2.14 billion (US$2.91 billion), compared to €1.77 billion in 2006.

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