The number of China's online gamers is expected to surpass 59
million in 2008, up 20 percent from last year's 48 million,
according to a nationwide survey released on Monday.
The "Netguide 2008" survey, begun in January 2007 by the Data
Center of the China Internet and Internet Society of China, polled
more than 300 websites, 270 enterprises and 50,786 interviewees
around the country.
It also reported that in China the market value in 2007
witnessed a 57-percent increase compared to previous year's 9.36
billion yuan ($1.2 billion).
Giant Interactive, a Shanghai-based company that offers
multiplayer online role playing games, became the last year's third
biggest gainer with a 14-percent market share.
The Nasdaq-listed Shanda and the popular portal Netease, which
has added online gaming to its services, maintained the lead in
2007 by revenue and number of subscribers.
Other renowned game developers such as Kingsoft and Perfect
World went public, indicating a trend in 2008, said Fu Zhihua,
director of the DCCI research department that conducted the
Free-to-play online games services, instead of the fee-based
model, would continue to dominate the market with an estimated
80-percent market share, the survey showed.
(Xinhua News Agency January 22, 2008)