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Approximately 20 million players have spent 17 billion hours on Xbox Live. That’s more than 2 hours for every person on the planet. The online gaming market is worth more than $15 billion, with a total of 40 million users who have registered PlayStation Network accounts. Surprisingly, online gaming is somewhat equally divided between genders, at 58% male players and 42% female players. With progresses in technology and Internet, online gaming is becoming more popular across all boards. The most popular titles include Halo 3, Call of Duty, World of Warcraft and Runescape for the Xbox and PC—games which involve real-time strategy (RTS), massively-multiplayer online role-playing game (MMORPG) functions, and online gaming servers and communities. Thirty years ago, however, it was hard to imagine competing with other gamers from all around the world without stepping a foot outside your bedroom. The evolution of online gaming has really developed with the overall expansion of computer networks and internet access.
Major milestones in online gaming include:

  • The beginning of multiplayer games in 1972 with PLATO
  • The first network game, MUD, released in 1978
  • The first worldwide multiplayer game MAD on BITNET in 1984
  • Maze War, which came out in 1973 and paved the way for server-host gaming
  • Neverwinter Nights, the first graphical MMORPG released in 1991
  • Doom, appearing in 1993, which brought about first-person shooter (FPS) multiplayer games
  • Quake, which introduced modern multiplayer gaming in 1996
  • Ultima Online, which set the foundations for massively multiplayer online (MMO) games.

Online gaming is an interesting industry for MBA candidates to explore for a couple of reasons: its business plan is created for the future and high speed connections are accessible to more people than ever before. The online gaming statistics on this infographic will enable strategic leaders to track gaming patterns across age, gender, trends, and income levels.


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