Premier Gaming Conference E3 Cancelled Amid Coronavirus Fears

There might be a digital version in June

Why This Matters

This is the latest in a long line of tech-related event cancellations; the financial, social, and industry-specific impacts of the coronavirus will be felt for quite a while.

E3 2006 in Los Angeles
 Getty Images / David McNew

The Electronic Entertainment Expo (E3) has been officially cancelled at this time by its sponsoring organization, the Entertainment Software Association.

The big picture: Of course, this isn't the first major event cancelled in the tech world. Mobile World Congress, Facebook's F8 event, Google I/O, and SXSW have all been cancelled or delayed due to the concerns over the COVID-19 pandemic currently hitting the globe.

Who cares: The global gaming industry hit revenues of over $150 billion in 2019, with the mobile segment accounting for 45 percent of that. The US became the number one gaming market in the same year, with a revenue of $36.9 billion. Compare that to the global box office revenue of $41.7 billion, and you can see how important video games are to the economy.

Bottom Line: The ESA hopes to put on a digital event in June, which is when E3 was scheduled to take place. It will be interesting to see whether real-life events can successfully transfer over to the digital space, and if they'll produce the same sort of revenue and industry buzz that they do in person.

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