Apple Arcade could be arriving just in time

Apple’s upcoming Apple Arcade may be arriving at just the right time. The global market for gaming desktops, notebooks, and monitors is expected to grow 8.2% year-over-year in 2019 to 42.1 million devices, according to a new forecast from IDC

Increased consumer interest, the rising popularity of competitive esports, and new hardware from GPU vendors will help drive growth throughout the forecast period, notes the research group. By the end of 2023 the market is expected to balloon to 61.1 million units with a five-year compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.8%.

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IDC identifies Gaming PCs as desktops or notebooks that have a premium or performance-grade GPU. This includes the mid-range and high-end offerings from Nvidia and AMD. Professional-grade GPUs such as the Quadro or Radeon Pro are excluded from IDC's gaming PC definition.  Similarly, when it comes to monitors, IDC identifies Gaming Monitors as those with a refresh rate of 100 Hz or higher.

In 2019, IDC anticipates 15.5 million gaming desktops will be shipped worldwide. Though desktops will face a year-over-year decline of 1.9% in 2019, IDC expects a rebound in 2020 and beyond as newer games embrace the latest graphics technologies such as Ray Tracing and as game-related content creation continues to proliferate. Meanwhile, gaming notebooks are forecast to grow 13.3% year-over-year to 20.1 million units in 2019 and gaming monitors will grow 21.3% year-over-year to 6.4 million units.

Last month Apple announced Apple Arcade, a game subscription service that will feature over 100 new and exclusive games, including original releases from creators Hironobu Sakaguchi, Ken Wong, Will Wright and more. The games can be played on Macs (yes, Macs!), iPhones, iPads, and Apple TVs. You can start a game on one device and continue it on another.

Apple Arcade will give customers the freedom to try any game from its handpicked collection of titles that are all-you-can-play, have no ads, ad tracking or additional purchases, and respect user privacy. The games will be “all-you-can-play” with no ads and no in-app purchases. The games will be curated by Apple editors.

Apple Arcade is coming this fall in over 150 countries. Pricing hasn’t been announced.