Just about everything in the Chinese gaming market is on the rise, according to a new report by Niko Partners: with the exception of internet cafés (numbers are down thanks to a ban on issuing new licenses), everything is growing by leaps and bounds. The online market jumped 71% in the past year, which is no great surprise, but the grey market success of consoles may be:
Console game sales were up 75 percent on a per-unit basis to 2.48 million, but Hanson noted that due to a Chinese console ban in place since 2000, the entire segment persists through the grey market ....
"The big boom this year came from the easier availability of the new next-gen consoles ...."
She pointed to PlayStation 2 as being more popular than its successor, on the strength of its affordability, game library, and backwards compatibility, with Wii seeing popularity for similar reasons. Between PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360, Hanson claimed Xbox 360 is more popular in China for its price point and library.
Other details and explanations can be found in a nice wrap up over at Gamasutra.
Niko's Hanson On Chinese Game Biz Growth [Gamasutra]