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In-app purchases more popular than DLC in the US

23% of people surveyed
In-app purchases more popular than DLC in the US

Microtransactions are purchased more often than downloadable content in the US, according to a survey.

The NPD Group surveyed nearly 9,000 people in the US between the ages of 13 to 54. The report found that of these, 28% had purchased additional game content in the last three months.


Of those who paid, IAPs were the most popular with 23% opting to use microtransactions for purchases such as in-game currency or items. DLC was less popular, with 16% purchasing extra content.

Nearly half of those who hadn’t purchased any microtransactions said they were unwilling to dispense with their money. 48% said the extra content was not worth the cost.

When it came to DLC, half of the non-purchasers said downloadable content was not worth the money while 16% said extra content should be included in the original game.


Interestingly, 78% of players said they were willing to spend money on IAPs to get weapons, tools and power-ups in-game, though they would prefer to earn this through gameplay.

Half of those who spent money on IAPs said they may buy more if the cost was lower.

Overall, 77% said they were fans of microtransactions and that it allowed them to enjoy a game more.
68% of respondents said however that the pay-to-win aspect of microtransactions was unfortunate.

“Spending on microtransactions and DLC is currently healthy, but game publishers and developers must not lose sight of the importance of looking at areas that will stimulate spending growth without compromising real and perceived value of the content they’re providing,” said NPD Group industry analyst Sam Naji.