By CAMILLA PALMER, campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 25 August 2000 12:00AM
The fragmented computer magazine sector was dominated by readers’
continued obsession with games - Future Publishing’s Official
PlayStation Magazine was a clear leader in this year’s ABC figures with
a circulation of 300,459.
Although it beat its nearest rival, Computer Shopper, by a hefty
134,000, PlayStation did not match its performance of last year,
suffering a 22.1 per cent slide year on year.
While subject matter may be fragmented, with gaming, purchasing guides
and manufacturer-branded titles jostling for position, the publishing
houses themselves are consolidating. Future and Dennis Publishing now
produce two-thirds of the top sellers in the computer sector.
Building on the success of Official PlayStation Magazine, Computec
launched PlayStation World, which reached 100,374 in its first ABC
The figures also suggest that niche magazines are moving into
Haymarket’s launch, the net, tapped into the growing market for consumer
internet magazines, achieving a circulation of 66,381 in its first
The 7.2 per cent year-on-year slide for Future’s PC Plus was offset by
an 8.9 per cent rise for its stablemate PC Gamer, while Dennis’ PC Pro
showed 7 per cent year-on-year growth.
VERDICT: Future and Dennis, the dominant forces in the sector, are
looking predatory and may attempt to build on their sizable market share
with further acquisitions of niche titles. Increasing consumer interest
in the internet will fuel development and possible brand extensions in
Title Publisher Total ABC Period on Year on
period % year
Official PlayStation Future 300,459 -14.6 -22.1
Computer Shopper Dennis 166,474 -4.1 -3.9
PC Pro Dennis 166,033 0.0 7.0
PC World VNU 133,361 -9.1 -5.9
PC Plus Future 117,645 5.9 -7.2
PlayStation World Computec 100,374 n/a n/a
PC Gamer Future 84,060 0.5 8.9
PC Zone Dennis 73,446 -6.1 3.2
Nintendo Official Emap 71,310 -9.4 -20.9
the net Haymarket 66,381 11.4 n/a
.N64 Future 61,687 -8.0 -25.6
Source: Audit Bureau of Circulations (January-June 2000).
This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk