According to a new report by Newzoo, South East Asia is the fastest growing audience for eSports. One of the defining factors for eSports’ growth is the number of spectators / audience. This number has been the sole criterion for increasing prize pools, news reports and player salaries /contracts.
The current number of spectators from South East Asia is 9.5 million. With a projected audience of 19 million by 2019, this number looks set to double. This number just includes the regular eSports enthusiasts currently. If we account for the occasional esports viewers. the number of eSports viewers would increase to around 40 million by 2019 according to Newzoo.
One of the biggest contributing factor to this number is Blizzard’s Overwatch. Overwatch has been a resounding success so far in Asia and with further tweaks incoming to improve the spectator experience, we can only hope that the number of viewers is going to rise exponentially.
Overwatch’s world championship at Blizzcon at the beginning of November led to the game’s first month-on-month increase in Twitch viewership since its launch. The world championship generated more than 1.5 million hours watched on Twitch, while tournaments of other games held at Blizzcon generated another 4 million hours. Through Newzoo’s Global PC Games Monitor, we saw that Blizzcon also increased Overwatch’s unique player numbers in North America and Europe by 3% month on month. At the event, Blizzard announced the Overwatch League, a closed league system with city-based teams, a whole new approach in the esports scene. With the league starting early next year, Overwatch’s viewership performance is expected to continue to improve over the course of 2017.
You can read the full report on Newzoo.