Game on! Gaming is more popular than ever, even with prices soaring

The UK's lockdown was announced 23rd March. Since then, consumer spending has significantly decreased, leading to a retail sales plunge of 18.1% in April. However, some items have become even more popular despite - or even because of - lockdown. Gaming is one such area.

There has been an 89% increase in people shopping for consoles, controllers, games and accessories on PriceSpy. At the same time, prices for these products have risen by 10%. One example is that the Xbox One X 1TB increased in popularity by 634% last month compared to the year before but has also seen a 20% hike in price for the last three months.

The lockdown effect

As more people stay at home, they need something to keep them occupied. Gaming offers both escapism and an end to boredom while staying inside.

PriceSpy’s data suggests that gaming is becoming more of a family hobby during lockdown. Overall, gaming accessories on PriceSpy have risen by 246% in popularity. Sony Playstation 4’s controller is the most sought after with a 1745% jump in popularity and corresponding 6.5% price rise in the last 90 days.  

The 10% price rise across the board on gaming products defies the sustained reduction in prices for the previous six months. A price decrease is expected in the run up to launches like the Xbox Series X and PlayStation 5 expected later this year, as retailers shift older stock. However, the increase in popularity for these older models has driven an industry wide increase in prices.

What can you do?

As popularity grows despite prices rising, what can you do to be a savvy saver?

Research is key. As gaming has a huge presence for reviews and opinions, don’t be afraid to take a look. PriceSpy has our own system to make sure each product has a trusted rating beside it, helping you make the most informed choice.

Don’t settle on the first price. As many retailers out there are putting prices up, it is easy to see how this may be daunting for the shopper. You should always have at least three prices in front of you before making a final decision.

As lockdown begins to ease in the UK, we may see gaming products prices start to lower once again. In the meantime, make sure to be a savvy shopper out there! Game on!