Both of the Next Gen game consoles offer a premium subscription plan that allows for online play and other benefits. One of these benefits is a changing catalog of free digital game downloads, including independent developer titles and older AAA titles. How often do Next Gen console gamers take advantage of these offerings? In a recent RapidPoll, we asked 400 US Next Gen console gamers “How often do you download and play the free digital games offered as part of your paid premium subscription (Xbox Live or PlayStation Plus)?”
Overall, 3/4 of Next Gen console gamers and 90% of premium subscribers download free games at least some of the time. About 45% of Next Console gamers (54% of premium subscribers) download at least one of the available free games every month. Of those that do not download the free games, over 2/3 do not have a premium subscription service (16% of all gamers do not have a premium subscription service) and 12% are unaware that the free game downloads are available.
Downloading habits are similar for PlayStation owners and Xbox owners. However, gamers that own both systems download the free games less frequently. Only 4% of premium subscribers that own either a PlayStation 4 or an Xbox One do not download any of the free games, whereas 12% of premium subscribers that own both platforms do not download any of the free games.
Xbox owners are also more likely to have a premium subscription, with 14% of Xbox owners not subscribing to Xbox Live Gold compared to 18% of PlayStation owners not subscribing to PlayStation Plus.
Male gamers download the free digital games more frequently than female gamers. Half of male gamers download at least one of the free games every month compared to 1/3 of female gamers. Female gamers are also four times more likely to not be aware of the availability of free games for the premium subscription service.