EA: Used games are important to the industry

CFO Blake Jorgensen says physical business will stick around for a "long period of time."

The used game market is important to the viability of the video game industry overall, Electronic Arts CFO Blake Jorgensen said today during the UBS Global Technology Conference in Sausalito, California.

"I also think that used games are an important part of the industry. People think about the prices of games based on the fact that they can still return that game and they need a physical disc to do that," Jorgensen said. "And so that will probably keep the physical business around for some period of time."

Jorgensen's comments came as part of a response regarding the possibility of the game industry becoming exclusively digital. The executive said this is not likely to happen anytime soon, pointing to the record industry as an example of the staying power of physical products.

"We spend a lot of time looking at the record business and it's surprising, but despite the fact that probably no one in this room has bought a CD lately, there's still a lot of CDs being sold," Jorgensen said. "And so I think there will be a physical business [for games] probably for a long period of time."

Just because physical games will continue on, it does not mean digital revenue can't rise at the same time, Jorgensen argued.

"So you might still buy a physical disc, but you might extend the gameplay on that by 10 or 12 months based on digital extensions to it where all that comes via downloads coming in smaller pieces," he said.

Both the Xbox One and PlayStation 4 will allow users to download all retail games digitally day-and-date with their physical counterparts. However, an all-digital future for games is not coming anytime soon, despite improvements to bandwidth speeds made over the past years, Jorgensen said.

"The biggest impediment still appears to be bandwidth coming into the house. And while bandwidth speeds have improved dramatically over the last five years, unfortunately, because the processing power of the new boxes is so high, the size of games has increased dramatically. And so all of the benefits that we got from faster bandwidth was probably eaten up by bigger games. "

Battlefield 4 takes about six hours to download on PS4, Jorgensen said. And though users can begin playing while the game is downloading, "the average consumer still tends to want to to grab something and play it immediately," he said.

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Discussion

170 comments
soulless4now
soulless4now

Too many EA articles already this week. Good god. 

Dannystaples14
Dannystaples14

Good for you. I won't be going near another one of your games any time soon unless it is right at the bottom of a sale bin.

Hurvl
Hurvl

"despite the fact that probably no one in this room has bought a CD lately, there's still a lot of CDs being sold," Unlike some people, he recognizes that what you see in your immediate surroundings isn't representative of the whole world. It's really laughable when people say "I don't know anyone who bought a [insert product] so it's not very successful".

TheWatcher000
TheWatcher000

Translation:  "Our efforts for digital fascism have failed miserably.  You've won this round, peasants.  But we'll be back."

TheWatcher000
TheWatcher000

Yes, They Are.

EA is not.  Now, please shut down forever, so that Gaming can live again.

SDBusDriver1979
SDBusDriver1979

Gone a year and a half EA-free with no Origin account, I feel like a better person.

19James89
19James89

The day that physical copies of games are no longer available is the day that I move away from gaming altogether. If other people want to accept digital downloading and all the DRM and restrictions that come with it, more power to them, but I won't. When I buy a product it is mine, I want a tangible product that I can hold and I want to be able to lend it to a friend, take it to a friends house or trade it in for something else. I will tolerate DRM replacing my basic consumer rights.

Pupchu
Pupchu

"All our efforts have been in vain, we had no choice but to accept. And yes, this is damage control."

ACWH
ACWH

I swear these guys are hated more than bankers now.

Jmalk
Jmalk

OMG EA ARE SO AMAZING !!!

Nice try.

J_Dangerously
J_Dangerously

Translation: We fought for DRM and hyped up digital downloads.  We weren't expecting the fans to fight back.  They usually don't.  We'll pretend that retail and the used game market are important to us.  For now.

arqe
arqe

Poor console player excuse ... 

xtraflossy
xtraflossy

Why point to the record industry as an example when you need not go any further then your own business models and the recent MS "offering" 

Should have read: "Physical games will remain in place case we already tried that digitl shit and it failed misserably"

IanNottinghamX
IanNottinghamX

EA...dont you realize you are a complete fucking joke at this point..? noone believes your statements....

jophy
jophy

EA needs to stfu. don't they realized everytime they make a comment, it is suicide?

RenegadeGR
RenegadeGR

hypocrites, if used game was so important y did they implement the pay for passcode shit to play used game and game locked to account couple years bak.

SIDEFX1
SIDEFX1

EA contradicting themselves.. 

Martyr77
Martyr77

I love when EA and Microsoft tried to stop us from having used games a few months ago. They failed miserably so now both companies act like it didn't happen. Nice try EA. When you try to stab someone then offer them a cookie they usually haven't forgotten about the knife coming at their back.

demondogx
demondogx

Said the company that did everything in their power for the last few years to kill used games.

Penguinlord1
Penguinlord1

No, no, no..I can't be reading this article right, I must be drunk.

RossRichard
RossRichard

Hrmm, this wasn't what EA was saying a few months ago.

Megavideogamer
Megavideogamer

With Battlefield 4 taking up to 6 hours to download. The physical Disc is not going anywhere. Many people are on data caps to boot. The all digital future is not going to happen if ever. The cost to upgrade the internet infrastructure in the united states alone will cost Billions. The U.S.A could fall in default as early as Jan 2014. The last thing they will be doing is spending billions to do this.

darkhisham
darkhisham

This is just a vague description of how I reacted to the title: HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!

OrgeLambart
OrgeLambart

ok... who replaced the board of directors at EA sports with rational people... This is the same company that ushered in Online passes after all....

RedWave247
RedWave247

Show of hands: who's surprised? Anyone? Hello? *taps the mic*

lostn
lostn

Well of course they've been forced to say this after Microsoft backed down after the consumers had spoken. If they continued to maintain their stance that used games are hurting the industry, they would have been perceived as the bad guy. 

Doing the online pass thing and loads of DLC is quite obviously an anti-used-game move. So they're kidding if they tell us they approve of used sales.

Tiger_Ali
Tiger_Ali

Pure talk...Once they can shove drm down our throats they will become mrs carrigan

BARRICADE_28
BARRICADE_28

EA reminds me of a creepy guy where everything he says to any girl is designed to try to get inside their pants.  Except EA wants your money, not your vagina.

jenovaschilld
jenovaschilld

Wow - talk about a 360 degree turn-around from their company wide policy of DRM, ban on used games, push on digital (pay to play, pay to win, pay to see the end). Don't believe me, just check some of the inflamatory comments made by current and former excecutives of EA.

My favorite was, "I have not green lit one game to be developed as a singleplayer experience", - frank gibeau. 

de-astroturfer
de-astroturfer

Quote "Used games are important to the industry"

Said the C*** who sat down in a boardroom with Microsoft and cooked up the idea of charging customers a fee to resell their bought and paid for games !

RainIsMyDrug
RainIsMyDrug

they can't seen to make up their damn mind... First they were all about digital only future but now they are all for disc base? 

DamnILoveGames
DamnILoveGames

Says the guy who's games originally required an online pass.

Mr_Big_Boss
Mr_Big_Boss

lol, shut up EA!, we know you despise used games.

randomkidlol
randomkidlol

Just saying that to slow down the PR damage after BF4 debacle.

allever
allever

This guy is a two-face.  EA and other publishers tried to limit used games via the Xbox One and by forcing gamers to buy passes to unlock content / play online. 

allever
allever

@ACWH They are hated, but I think they like it.  Unfortunately, until gamers stop buying products from these companies they will continue to do as they please.

The best way to make a company listen to you is by NOT GIVING THEM YOUR WALLET.

TheWatcher000
TheWatcher000

@jophy But if they stopped saying stuff, Copy/Paste pseudo journalists like Eddie would be out of a job.

demondogx
demondogx

@jophy Oh what they say here is right, but the fact it comes from EA and if we look at what EA's policy's about used games actually are completely contradicts this statement and makes them look like a joke.

MonocleOwl
MonocleOwl

@Megavideogamer 

Most of the things governments spend their money on these days cost billions. Question is what do we spend those billions on.

RedWave247
RedWave247

@jenovaschilld You mean 180. A 360 would mean they've turned all the way around to return to their original point.

Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

@allever True, but it might be possible EA's starting to wake up. Just keep an eye them for now.

allever
allever

@Jinzo_111887 @allever Wake up? You give them more credit than they deserve.  They are making tons of money from DEMO games like Call of Duty Ghost, Battlefield 4, etc.  They are too ded by money to do the moral thing.

Good luck waiting for their "turn around"

allever
allever

@Jinzo_111887 I agree with you 110% with the PS+ thingy for the same reasons you indicated, but unfortunately, it's not gonna happen. 

Face it, we are now stuck paying these yearly fees.  Microsoft started it with the Xbox and Gamers bought into it.   Since the majority of gamers (and the population) are idiots (you're not one of 'em ;)), everyone else is stuck with it.  There is no chance in hell that Microsoft or Sony would want to let go of that extra revenue.

To be honest, I actually favor PS+ over Xbox Live.  It only limits online play, so I can still watch Netflix, Hulu Plus, etc.  without PS+.  Also, Sony is not as big as Microsoft, so they don't have the money to compete with Microsoft.  In my opinion, they need the money more than Microsoft.

Jinzo_111887
Jinzo_111887

@allever Like I said, we'll just have to watch them for now. I plan to watch Sony to see if they'll drop the fee to play online multiplayer games on the PS4. It's the one thing keeping me from buying the system. I don't care about any of the other benefits of PS+, so I refuse to pay for it. Thing is, requiring it to play online multiplayer seems like overkill since most people would get it for the random games, which would mean Sony would have gotten most of the money anyway. Personally, I'd rather use the money to get games I want over what Sony's trying to promote.