Gender Bender: The Gaming Differences Between Girls And Boys

Gender Bender: The Gaming Differences Between Girls And Boys

Research firm PlayScience recently decided to take a look at the differences between boys and and girls aged 6-14 and how they engage with video games. The differences in consoles owned by boys and girls appears to be minimal, but gender variances arise with regards to how they are used.

Apparently for boys, video games are the focus, while girls are more likely to multitask using the device.

While girls take advantage of the many features technology has to offer, boys seem to have blinders on – running straight towards games on every platform. Girls, on the other hand, are more interested than boys in downloading music, pictures, ringtones, and wallpaper, listening to music, chatting and e-mailing with friends, watching videos, and reading eBooks on the tech devices they use.

So girls are far more likely to take advantage of a device that lets them be social, whereas boys are mostly interested in the games themselves. But are there any similarities in how different genders engage with gaming devices?

So, where do boy and girls agree? Two words: digital convergence. In general, both boys and girls want their digital devices both for entertainment and communication purposes (even though the genders skew differently depending on the device and the use). And portability is key – they don’t want to carry around multiple devices to suit all of their needs.

It’s interesting stuff – on a number of levels. The first point of interest being that despite the fact that the number of young girls gaming is increasing, to the point where there is little difference between the genders, there are differences in the way girls interact with technology. What interests us more, however, is the need for children to have a convergence device – will this impact on sales of the 3DS? The most wanted gifts for kids last Christmas last year were all Apple products – iPod Touch, iPad, iPhone. If they are already in possession of a portable device that serves all their needs, will kids (especially girls) have a need for another handheld console?

Digital Natives: The Gender Issue [PlayScience via Gamasutra]


  • Research firm Enduscience recently uncovered the amazing facts that kids don’t like homework and prefer chupa-chups to brussel sprouts.

  • I used to live with a woman who would sit and play big money on the PC while watching Buffy and having a full conversation at the same time.

    This is fairly old news that women prefer to multi-task and men like to get deeper into one thing.

    What are scientists so hard up that they have to research fairly coomon beleifs in new ways?
    How about that cure for cancer guys???

  • ‘What interests us more, however, is the need for children to have a convergence device’. This is pretty much what I was thinking. What the hell is going on with kids these days!?

    • To be fair, considering how fast the technology is maturing, starting them early seems like a really good idea.

      However, I don’t know that I’d be willing to splash out on an iPad for an under 12….

  • Its always been like though, even before technology came along. Girls would sit and gossip on the playground while the boys played cowboys and indians or war games or played footy. The only difference is that today we have technology to faciliate these things.

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