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With new Xbox One and PlayStation 4 due, spending on video games falls

With new Xbox One and PlayStation 4 due, spending on video games falls
Sony is scheduled to release the PlayStation 4 game console later this year. (Odd Andersen / AFP/Getty Images)

U.S. consumer spending on video games fell in the second quarter as fewer titles were released and players anticipated the release of new consoles, said research firm NPD Group in a report Thursday.

In the three months that ended in June, Americans spent a total of $2.88 billion on video game content, down about 3% from the same period last year. The decline reflected the decreased number of newly released games, the firm said. There were 37% fewer new titles in the quarter compared with last year.

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Consumers, game developers and publishers are holding back as they wait for the introduction of Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox One and Sony's PlayStation 4 game consoles, which are coming out later this year.  

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NPD analyst Liam Callahan said increased spending on digital content, including games for download, add-ons, subscriptions and games for mobile devices and social network, helped buffer the continuing slide of revenue from physical versions.

"Increases in digital format spending offset nearly all the losses from the declines in physical format spending," Callahan said in a statement.

Spending on the digital side accounted for $1.77 billion, up 13% from the same quarter of 2012.

Meanwhile, consumers spent $769 million on new video and PC games, down 25%, and rentals and purchases of used physical games generated $343 million, an 11% decrease.

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