Daily Insights

The Gaming Boom

By: Alizah Asif Farooqi | Feb 24, 2021

IKEA gets in on the gaming trend with a new line of furniture and accessories made especially for the popular pastime.

When the pandemic hit, many consumers were forced to find new hobbies. Gaming, once an activity geared towards children (or seemingly immature adults), suddenly became mainstream. In fact, for adults between the ages of 45 and 54, time spent gaming increased by 59% over the last year, while their dollar spend rose by 76%. For the 55 to 64 age group, time and money spent jumped by 48% and 73%, respectively. Games like Fortnite and Animal Crossing flew off physical and digital shelves. Xbox even “reboxed” consoles as part of a campaign to help senior citizens and young people come together through gaming.

Later this year, IKEA plans to push out a range of 30 products including gaming desks and chairs, a drawer unit, and accessories like a mug holder, mouse bungee, neck pillow, ring light, and more. To more accurately give gamers what they need, the Swedish retailers joined forces with hardware company ASUS Republic of Gamers. The line has already been released in China and will be available worldwide by this October.

But the journey ahead is not without its obstacles. Ikea isn’t the first furniture company to try to get in on the gaming boom. In July 2020, Herman Miller partnered with Logitech to create an ergonomic gaming chair targeting streamers, gamers, and esports players. Amazon Basics also sells a gaming chair that’s currently sold out. Even non-furniture companies like Papa John’s got in on the madness with a mega-chair of its own.

IKEA was also slow to adopt e-commerce at the start of the pandemic, causing it to fall into the Average class of Gartner’s Digital IQ Index: Big Box this year. As such, IKEA customers complained of delayed orders, no curbside slots and undelivered furniture, jamming phone lines to cancel orders. If ever there was a time for IKEA to improve its e-commerce game, it’s now.

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