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Retail will survive - AWOMO

Alongside digital distribution.

Even as his company, GDI, is developing a new platform for videogames that enables the downloading of games in a much shorter time, CEO Roger Walkden doesn't foresee the death of "bricks and mortar" retailers any time soon.

"...I think there's a place for a box in the life of a consumer," he told GamesIndustry.biz.

"For example, there's a large amount of gifting that goes on around videogames, and that will never go away. That's one simple reason, and the reason why CDs haven't disappeared from HMV either."

Walkden thinks that the move to digital download will be gradual - and, like everything else, there will be a section of the market that will cotton onto it faster than others.

As to why digital downloads won't supplant traditional retail any time soon, he says that most of it is to do with a business model that is not optimal at the moment, leading to a weak consumer experience.

The aim of GDI's new platform, A World of My Own, is to change the way that videogames are played over the internet, and to bring the kind of success seen with boxed games to digital downloads, Walkden said.

Even so, looking at the next five years, he doesn't see digital downloads leading to the death of retail.

"For me I see [digital downloads] growing exponentially over the next few years, obviously, but never with the death of the box. I think they'll both need to work to live alongside each other for the next five years."

The complete interview with Roger Walkden can be found on GamesIndustry.biz.

Coincidentally, GamesIndustry.biz will survive alongside Eurogamer. But no touching.

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GamesIndustry International is the world's leading games industry website, incorporating GamesIndustry.biz and IndustryGamers.com.

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