The market for enthusiast-grade PC gaming hardware is doing well, according to the latest report from Jon Peddie Research. All told, it was worth just under $20 billion in 2011. That figure is projected to grow to $23.6 billion this year and as high as $32 billion by 2015. Average selling prices are expected to fall due to greater competition, but volumes will purportedly continue to rise. There are 54 million "performance and enthusiast class PC gamers" right now, JPR says, and that number will hit 72 million by 2015.
JPR credits several factors for the uptick, including strong demand in China, where Internet cafes remain popular with gamers. Those establishments are apparently snapping up plenty of hardware, and so are individuals. Russia, Brazil, and India are also mentioned as strong markets for PC gaming gear.
The DIY crowd gets a shout out for driving billions in component sales—and for adapting the PC to the living room. JPR specifically mentions "super consoles," which amount to small-form-factor PCs hooked up to big-screen TVs. We've been proponents of those kinds of systems for years, and they become more and more compelling the deeper we get into the current console release cycle. Heck, so does PC gaming as a whole. The PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 are approaching six and seven years old, respectively—an eternity in the hardware world.