There's been a 25 per cent drop in the amount of time people spent playing games in South Korea's PC bang gaming cafés.
That's according to research by Interpret, people spent 5.56m hours playing games in bangs during February. The following month, this number dropped to 4.38 million before a slight dip to 4.21 million hours in April. This is obviously due to the COVID-19 coronavirus pandemic, with people having to stay at home to help slow the spread of the virus. If we're honest, we're surprised that the dip isn't even bigger.
It is predicted that May will see the market on the rise again. Currently, this month has seen a nine per cent increase from last month already, with an estimated total of 4.6 million hours.
"While South Korea's PC café market fell from its pre-COVID level, the impact could have been far worse, especially in contrast to the outcome with PC gaming cafés in America, which are seeing zero business due to shelter-in-place restrictions," Interpret's VP of research and strategy Jesse Divnich said
"A 25 per cent haircut during a global pandemic is actually fairly encouraging, and data is already pointing to signs of recovery for South Korea's PC café market."
Interpret has also explained that the decrease in numbers could be the "new normal" as PC units and accessory sales increased in the country. In Q1 2020 there was around a 20 per increase in PC sales. Meanwhile, year-on-year in April, sales of keyboards was up 26 per cent, RAM had an increase of 49 per cent, and CPUs saw a rise of 34 per cent.
The numbers indicate that South Korean PC players are now building hardware for use at home, this is likely due to being at home as a result of the coronavirus outbreak.