How far we’ve come.
A new survey from GigaOM Pro predicts the online market for digital goods will grow from $16.7 billion last year to $36 billion by 2014.
Music and video games have led the market so far, via iTunes and Activision’s cash cow “World of Warcraft.” These days, social network games (such as FarmVille) are beginning to contribute notably to the bottom line as well, but Paul Zagaeski, author of the report, says the market is just getting started – and is primed for significant growth.
“Payment models will continue to evolve and even established players in digital goods will need to continue adapt,” he says. “Early success stories … are only the beginning, as new, socially-enabled digital markets continue to grow in importance.”
The big money potential continues to underscore why Apple and the network content providers haven’t yet reached a deal for programming on the iPad. The music industry isn’t completely dependent on Apple, but it’s close. Video programmers want to have some leverage if that becomes the case for that industry as well.