Worldwide consumer spending on video game hardware, software and online gaming is expected to top $74 billion in 2011, up 10.4% from 2010, according to a report out today by Gartner.

The research firm predicts that by 2015 spending will reach $112 billion, up from $67 billion in 2010.

The $74 billion figure is especially astounding when you consider the worldwide box office for all films released in each country around the world reached $31.8 billion in 2010, a number which is not expected to increase greatly, if at all, in 2011.

Gaming sofware sales in 2011 are expected to account for 60% of overall revenues coming in at $44.7 billion in sales, followed by hardware sales at $17.8 billion and online gaming revenues at $11.9 billion.

Gartner estimates that over the next five years, gaming hardware’s market share will remain constant while software spending will lose share to online-gaming spending, the fastest-growing segment. Gartner estimates consumer spending on global online gaming (subscriptions and microtransactions) will show a compound annual growth rate of 27 percent through 2015. The result is the mobile gaming marketplace is expected to grow its overall share from 15 percent in 2010 to 20 percent in 2015.

“As the popularity of smartphones and tablets continues to expand, gaming will remain a key component in the use of these devices. Although they are never used primarily for gaming, mobile games are the most downloaded application category across most application stores,” said Tuong Nguyen, principal research analyst at Gartner. “For this reason, mobile gaming will continue to thrive as more consumers expand their use of new and innovative portable connected devices.”

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