Gaming Time Soars Across Europe in 2022, Samsung Ads Finds

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Samsung Ads, the media and advertising division of Samsung, has revealed the latest insights around gaming across its ecosystem in a new report, “Behind the Screens: Gaming Trends Report”.

As per the report, the number of Samsung Smart TVs used for gaming in Europe has increased 12% YoY, growing from 4.8 million in Q1 2021 to 5.4 million in Q1 2022. In the UK, this figure grew 14% to 1.5 million active Samsung gaming TVs in Q1 2022.

The growth of the Samsung gaming universe correlates with strong smart TV sales, coupled with the enhanced gaming experience on Samsung TVs and continuous adoption of next-generation game consoles.

In the UK, the number of total hours spent gaming on Samsung Smart TVs grew by 7% YoY, increasing from 191 million hours in Q1 2021 to 205 million hours in Q1 2022.

Overall, European gamers are playing more frequently year-on-year, which is reflected in a 2% growth in the average gaming sessions number per Samsung TV.

Different Habits for Different Consoles

When it comes to the generation of consoles, gamers in the Samsung universe who use consoles from previous generations – such as PS4, Switch, and Xbox One – still make up a majority share, accounting for 79% of all Samsung connected gaming consoles in EU5. However, next-generation consoles – such as PS5 and Xbox Series X & S – are also catching up, especially considering they were only released in November 2020.

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Samsung Ads saw a 149% increase in the number of active next-generation consoles in the UK in Q1 2022 compared to the same time last year – the period immediately after the new generation consoles were released.

Next-generation console users tend to be particularly engaged with their new gadget and spend significantly more time per day playing than previous console users. In the UK in Q1 2022, the average time spent playing per Samsung TV per day was 2 hours 12 minutes on next-generation consoles, compared to 50 minutes on old generation consoles.

Gamers vs. Non-gamers

Gamers are engaging more with their Smart TVs, with the average total screen time among gamers 45% higher than that of non-gamers. Whilst Gamers spend 51% more time in streaming environments than non-gamers, they also spend 32% less time in linear environments than non-gamers.

When it comes to which environments Gamers are spending most of their time on Samsung TVs, Gamers spend nearly twice as much time in streaming environments as they do in linear TV, with 101 hours per quarter spent in linear compared to 195 hours of streaming.

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When looking at the propensity to streaming amongst gamers, 35% of UK gamers are heavy streamers. Conversely, 40% of UK heavy streamers are gamers, demonstrating the strong correlation between gaming and heavy streaming audiences.

Streaming and gaming combined make up 75% of gamers’ total screen time on Samsung TVs across EU5 countries.

Gamers and AVOD

Gamers are often seen as early adopters of tech trends which is mirrored in their content consumption habits; AVOD accounts for 34% of streaming hours on gamer TVs, and the average time spent in AVOD environments is 41% higher amongst gamers than non-gamers.

Currently, YouTube is the leading platform in the AVOD category, but free, ad-supported streaming platforms such as Samsung TV Plus, Pluto and Rakuten are growing in popularity across Europe as viewers embrace premium, curated streaming content and no extra cost to them.

Gamers’ propensity for streaming is also reflected in their likelihood to watch Samsung TV Plus – Samsung’s free, ad-supported streaming service. Across EU5, gamers are 10% more likely to watch Samsung TV Plus than non-gamers. Among the genres on Samsung TV Plus, UK gamers tend to favour Entertainment, Documentaries and Sports programmes which have come out as the top three genres in Q1 2022.

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“The growing scale of Samsung’s gaming universe and continued engagement among gaming audiences post-pandemic, reflects that gaming is now firmly cemented as a habit amongst Samsung TV users. Samsung’s unique position in gaming allows us to understand the gaming audience from both hardware and behaviour perspectives,” Alex Hole, Vice President of Samsung Ads Europe, said.

“Gamers outstrip our non-gamer audience in terms of time with their TV by 45% – and this can’t be accounted for by gaming alone. They’re more likely to access a range of Smart TV options from linear TV to on-demand streaming platforms. For gamers, Smart TVs are truly the hub of the home,” Alex Hole added.

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