In the ERA’s report for entertainment sales (video, music, and games) in the UK for 2016, they say £6.3 billion was generated, which is a new record and is up 3% from 2015. Total physical entertainment sales dropped by 15% in 2016 as digital sales rose, though there were some bright spots on the retail side: handheld software was up 21.3% £48.8 million (likely thanks to Pokemon Sun/Moon) and vinyl records were up 56.4% to £65.6 million.
Games revenue was up 2.9% to just under £3 billion, but physical game sales declined 16% to £776 million. Digital game sales, meanwhile, were up 12% to £2.2 billion.
The biggest-selling entertainment release of the year was FIFA 17 with 2.5 million copies sold – almost the exact same number as FIFA 16 in 2015. Star Wars: The Force Awakens was #1 in video with 2.3 million copies sold, while Now That’s What I Call Music 95 was the #1 album with over 900,000 copies sold.
Despite lagging behind Black Ops 3, Call of Duty: Infinite Warfare was the #2 best-selling game of 2016 in the UK. Likely in third place was Battlefield 1, which moved over one million copies.
Entertainment Retailers Association CEO Kim Bayley said:
The music, video and games industries were understandably nervous about the advent of new digital services, but these figures provide resounding evidence of the benefits of our members’ investment in innovation. To have added over £1bn in new revenues in just four years is an incredible achievement. To put it another way, take away today’s digital services and the entertainment market would be barely a third the size it is today.
The ERA received their figures and data from GfK, the Official Charts Company, and IHS.