The average ‘gamer’ is far from the cliché of a young energy drinking male enthusiast who stays up all night with women and older males increasingly enjoying the activity too, a study of 2,000 adults has found.
And although those who enjoy games are still more likely to be men, women spend on average around an hour-and-a-half a day gaming – just 10 minutes a day less than men.
While males gamers prefer to spend their leisure time in first-person shooter games or playing virtual sports, women like strategy and puzzles the most, claims the research for Utilita Energy. Around 41 per cent of women now class themselves as ‘gamers’ – although they are more likely to play solo on mobile phones, rather than consoles.
Indeed, the study confirms that gaming has become a mainstream modern hobby, with 87 per cent of adults believing computer games are enjoyed by a diverse mix of people today. More than a third said their friends are gamers, and where there is one gamer in a house, they are rarely alone, with many saying there are at least two family members in the same household who share a love of gaming.
Out of the UK’s 9.2 million ‘gamer’ households, most have at least two consoles.
However, 34 per cent of those polled via OnePoll admitted to leaving at least one console on standby all the time when they are not playing which could cost £56 million in wasted electricity bills. A further £68 million per year could be saved by the five per cent of homes where gamers do not even bother to put the console into standby mode.
Says Bill Bullen, the environmentalist behind Utilita Energy:
“Our study revealed that gamers spend around £166 per year on buying consoles, games or games packs – little did they know that they may also be wasting up to £150 per year by leaving the console on when it’s not in use!
“Most consoles have an ‘energy-saving mode’ which can be found in the settings, but sadly, they are not set to this by default.”