With all the talk of mobile gaming recently, you would think that the amount of users participating would actually have increased. If data released by comScore is to be believed, however, that is not the case. Instead, mobile gamers have contracted 13 percent in the past year.
However, mobile gaming usage, thanks to the iPhone and other smartphone devices, has increased 35 percent.
“The inevitable ascent of the mobile gaming market depends not only on smartphone subscribers’ higher propensity to play games on their mobile devices, but also their heavier gaming activity across nearly every dimension. Smartphone subscribers (47.1 percent) are three times more likely than feature phone subscribers (15.7) to play games on their device at least once a month. They are more than five times as likely to play games almost every day and far surpass their feature phone counterparts across various methods of game play,” comScore said.
They added: “Smartphone subscribers also install significantly more games on their devices with 27.3 percent having installed at least one game compared to just 5.6 percent of feature phone subscribers. A third of smartphone subscribers with games have more than five games installed on their phones, while less than one percent of feature phone subscribers have that many games installed.”
Lastly, Mark Donovan of comScore provided some color and perspective to these figures, saying that “[a]lthough the number of mobile gamers has declined in the past year, there is reason for significant optimism about the future of this market. As the market transitions from feature phones to smartphones, the dynamics of gameplay are also shifting towards a higher quality experience. As a result, we can expect to see a profound increase in adoption of this activity, both in terms of audience size and overall engagement.”
The data, while on the surface might be slightly shocking, isn’t all that really upon second glance. As Donovan points out, it represents merely a shifting point in the data, rather than a trend. Mobile gaming is here to stay.