Rapid growth in the eSports and streamed games sector will see revenues almost double by 2021, according to the latest Juniper Research.
2017 is forecast to bring a total revenue of $1.8 billion, rising to $3.5 billion in four years time.
The 'eSports, Let’s Play & Watch Play: Competitive Tournaments and Content Streaming 2017-2021' report found that much of the rise relates to viewers seeking to improve their own gameplay, alongside a dedicated following of individual broadcasters on platforms including Twitch and YouTube.
Juniper stated that whilst the subscription model, as seen on platforms such as Twitch, will contribute significant revenues to the industry, it will be advertisers who reap rewards, with almost 90 per cent of eSports and ‘let’s play’ viewers – commentary on streams of the playing of video games – also watching ad-supported casual games streams in 2021.
2016 proved to be a significant year in the eSports space; Sky and ITV joined forces to launch Ginx, a 24-hour eSports channel; Yahoo launched it's own eSports hub; whilst Cinedigm and The WHAM Network recently partnered to start a global gaming and eSports channel.