Mobile apps and games have never been as popular as they currently are in 2019. In fact, according to the latest research from marketing intelligence experts Newzoo, around 2.4 billion people will reportedly play mobile games this year, generating a huge “lucrative, untapped audience for brands” in the process.
“Unlocking the Power of Mobile Gamers”
According to the report “Betting on Billions: Unlocking the Power of Mobile Gamers,”which released in partnership with Activision Blizzard, game apps are now the third mostpopular type of app downloaded from app stores after shopping and social media. This gap narrows further with the millennial generation, as games are the second mostpopular apps with mobile users aged 18 to 20. In today’s app-heavy era, during which it’s possible to download an app for pretty much any everyday activity, mobile games prove to be as indispensable with smartphone users such as communication platforms like Facebook Messenger.
Going against the stereotype of avid gamers being male, the report indicated a slight skew in gender ratios when it comes to mobile gaming: 51 percent women and 49 percent men. Puzzle games, such as the ubiquitous Candy Crush Saga also have a larger audience with female players than male: 63 percent of puzzle app users are women. Shoot-em-up-type gaming apps are, perhaps unsurprisingly, the one vertical that is significantly more popular with male gamers (74 percent) than female (26 percent).
The report surveyed over 12,300 mobile users, originating from Great Britain, the U.S., Germany and France.
The Games Topping the Charts
The report names the most popular gaming apps with players around the world (during the 14-day period in December 2018 that the survey took place), which also provides a fascinating insight into the longevity of mobile games as a genre. Recent global mobile gaming phenomena such as Fortnite, Pokémon GO and Angry Birds naturally ranked quite highly with players, but the game that took the top spot released in 2012. The previously mentioned Candy Crush Saga, which initially released by King and later acquired by Activision Blizzard, was the most played mobile game in the survey, with one in three gamers playing it throughout the month leading up to the survey. Fortnite came in in second place, but Candy Crush was almost twice as popular with players in comparison.
In other verticals, real money gaming apps still ride high in popularity among adult mobile gamers. A survey carried out by the U.K. Gambling Commission on the habits of British gamblers revealed that 44 percent of the people surveyed regularly played real money poker or casino apps on their smartphones. However, this data represents only a fraction of the total global market of real money gamers, which includes players in territories as diverse as India and Europe.
The Importance of the Chinese Market
Even though the report claims to provide a global overview of the mobile gaming industry, it doesn’t present any findings from the Chinese market, which has already proved to be a bighitter in gaming entertainment.
China has been tapped by industry experts as one of the key territories set to dominate and shape the industry in the future thanks to it having almost 600 million gamers and around 25 percent of the global gaming revenue. Over the next three years, gaming revenue in China looks to increase to $42 billion (USD), with revenues generated by the mobile sector accounting for over half that amount.