Gaming is no longer just a welcome distraction from the hustle and bustle of our daily lives. Today’s games have become one of the main sources of both entertainment and interaction thanks to the introduction of the multiplayer experience and features like video conferencing and mobile chat apps.
Perhaps unsurprisingly, some of the latest data on video game consumers worldwide shows that an estimated 40% of the world’s population plays games. That level of interest certainly explains growing investments in the gaming sector, which is now larger and more lucrative than the movie and music industries combined.
The Impact of the Covid-19 Pandemic on the Mobile Gaming Market
The number of active mobile gaming users exploded following the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.
Stuck at home or trying to adjust to the era of social distancing, many people started downloading mobile game apps as an escape. But these games also became a tool for families and friends to socialize and interact.
In China alone, which was the first country to impose lockdowns, mobile game downloads increased to 284.3 million in February 2020. This trend quickly spilled over into Western countries, paving the way for the unprecedented growth of the gaming sector.
The success story doesn’t end there. The mobile gaming sector is forecast to have another good year in 2022. Last year the market generated just over $90 billion in revenue, with earnings expected to surpass the 100 billion mark in 2022.
The biggest game-changer in mobile gaming was the increase in the use of mobile social games such as Among Us, Pokemon Go, and various Bingo chat games.
Why Social Mobile Games Are Driving the Mobile App Gaming Market
The number of social mobile game users may have skyrocketed at the start of the pandemic, but the easing of lockdowns and other restrictions hasn’t dampened people’s enthusiasm, and interest in these games is still growing. We’ve decided to explore the reasons behind this hype and see how these types of games are going to drive revenue growth in the mobile game industry during the coming year.
Factors Influencing the Growth of the Social Mobile Games Market
These are some of the key factors fuelling the growth of the social mobile game market:
- Tech Development
Advancements in smartphone technology are among the most important prerequisites for the social mobile gaming industry to thrive.
The gaming industry is rapidly growing, and smartphones are playing a vital role in this growth. In 2021, mobile game revenues accounted for 52% of the global market. And according to some of the most recent data, mobile games will generate more than $116 billion via consumer spending by 2024.
Furthermore, some of the biggest players, such as Samsung and Apple, improved the quality of their phones to satisfy the growing demands of today’s mobile users. Today’s mobile phones and tablets are packed with quality features and have bigger screens and greater storage capacities, all of which open up a world of possibilities for a broader range of users.
- Affordable Pricing Models
The availability of affordable social mobile games is another important factor contributing to the growth of this industry. Also, free-to-play models give players the opportunity to try the game before they decide to make a purchase.
This resulted in more downloads, which wouldn’t necessarily be as high if users had to pay right away. Pokemon Go, one of the most popular mobile social games, allows users to play for free, which is one of the reasons for its exponential growth over the years.
- The Social Component of the Game
Social interaction is another reason for the growth of the mobile social game market. Since the start of the pandemic, a growing number of people have begun to appreciate games with social features to substitute for the absence of actual social activities.
A study conducted by Simon-Kucher and Partners shows that around 60% of users played more multiplayer games and games with social components. Naturally, developers are expected to boost these features to make their games more competitive. The study also concludes that games with social components are more likely to become viral, lock players to their platform, and attract and retain players of all types.
The growing demand for mobile gaming that was initially fuelled by the pandemic is not slowing down. The numbers speak for themselves – mobile gamers were spending $1.7 billion every week on both iOS and Google Play purchases in 2021. These impressive numbers have a lot to do with the development of social features. And with game developers looking to introduce further improvements, the future looks bright for the mobile gaming market.