Gaming will remain a growth industry for a long time... Full article from the New York Times.
CHATAWA, Miss. â€” For 133 years the School Sisters of Notre Dame have lived here in a thick forest just up the hill from the Tangipahoa River. In a modest but stately compound called St. Mary of the Pines, 52 retired members of this Roman Catholic order spend much of their time as the orderâ€™s members have since the 19th century. They read and garden, fish and sew. They pray five times a day.
But many also have a new hobby, one they credit for keeping their hands steady and minds sharp. They play video games. Every day residents go to the seven-terminal â€œComputer Coveâ€ to click furiously on colorful, nonviolent, relatively simple games like Bejeweled, Bookworm and Chuzzle.
Though they live in a remote grove, the women of St. Mary are actually part of a vast and growing community of video-game-playing baby boomers and their parents, especially women.
It turns out that older users not only play video games more often than their younger counterparts but also spend more time playing per session. Pogo.com is a Web site that offers â€œcasualâ€ games, easy to play and generally less complicated than the war, sports and strategy games favored by hard-core gamers. According to Electronic Arts, the game publisher that runs the site, people 50 and older were 28 percent of the visitors in February but accounted for more than 40 percent of total time spent on the site. On average women spent 35 percent longer on the site each day than men.
â€œBaby boomers and up are definitely our fastest-growing demographic, and it is because the fear factor is diminishing,â€ said Beatrice Spaine, the Pogo.com marketing director. â€œWomen come for the games, but they stay for the community. Women like to chat, and these games online are a way to do that. Itâ€™s kind of a MySpace for seniors.â€