Share of US smartphone and tablet owners downloading games more than doubles in last 3 years, reports Park Associates
Up from 8% to 18% in 2011
As a result, it's hardly surprising that the number of apps and, in particular, games users are engaging with on such devices has been rising accordingly.
A study from research firm Parks Associates claims the share of US consumers downloading games to smartphones and tablets has grown in tandem with the number of devices in the market, jumping from 7 percent in 2008 to 18 percent in 2011.
Park believes this growth, coupled with the rise of the freemium model, will drive app revenue in future years.
"In-app purchases greatly expand monetisation of the free-to-play model, thanks to seamless payments," said research analyst Pietro Macchiarella of the firm's latest white paper, Trends in Digital Gaming: Free-to-Play, Social, and Mobile Games.
"Already, most of the top grossing games on iTunes and Android can be downloaded for free and generate the majority of their revenues via virtual purchases.
"While mobile players are often characterised as 'casual gamers,' they spend a comparable amount of money on free-to-play titles as their peers spend on console games."
The study also found that, among tablet owners, 71 percent of adults and 79 percent of teenagers play games for at least one hour a month.
[source: Parks Associates]