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Games leading online market

Music and video jealous.

Online gaming and distribution is making more money than both the videos and music in the digital entertainment sector, GamesIndustry.biz reports.

The conclusion came from a new report by Strategy Analytics, which worked out that online games made around USD 3.8 billion in 2006, a figure it reckons should climb to around 11.8 billion in the futuristic year of 2011.

It also deduced that online sales took up a whole third of the entire software revenue-pie. Chomp.

"The rapid growth of the addressable market for digital distribution of both PC and console games will clear the way for distribution of mainstream hit titles which has up to now been restricted to the physical retail channel," said Martin Olausson, chief boffin of research.

But the increased presence of speedy broadband connections and prominence of MMOGs like World of Warcraft is also helping to attract people to go digital, says the report.

"The main driver for sustained growth in the online games market will be the continued uptake of broadband services around the world," added David Mercer, clever-clogs analyst at Strategy Analytics.

"Additionally, the very lucrative revenue opportunity in both the massively multiplayer segment and the electronic sell through market will continue to attract new entrants into the online games market."

It follows a trend of more and more high-profile publishers adding their games to the list of titles available on Valve's digital distribution service, Steam.

Perhaps that silly old future isn't too far away after all, then.

Head over to GamesIndustry.biz, where every fictional news-rock is turned over to reveal fact.

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Robert Purchese

Senior Staff Writer

Bertie is senior staff writer and Eurogamer's Poland-and-dragons correspondent. He's part of the furniture here, a friendly chair, and reports on all kinds of things, the stranger the better.

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