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Mobile consumer spend dropped to $110 billion in 2022, while downloads surged

Games such as Diablo Immortal and Apex Legends Mobile saw high adoption, but spend dropped 5%
Mobile consumer spend dropped to $110 billion in 2022, while downloads surged
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A new report from has broken down the performance of the mobile gaming industry in 2022.

Worldwide, consumer spend fell $6.31 billion to $109.51 billion, a decline of five percent. This fall was reflected in the majority of markets worldwide, with consumers spending considerably less money on mobile gaming in 2022 compared to prior years.

However, there are several notable exceptions: India, for example, saw an increase in consumer spend of $0.02 billion, following a decline of $0.04 billion between 2020 and 2021. Brazil, Mexico, And Indonesia all likewise saw increases in consumer spend between 2021 and 2022, while Argentina has remained stable at $0.07 billion per year, following and increase of $0.01 billion between 2019 and 2020.

Among the countries to see growth between 2021 and 2022 is China, despite the turbulence in the Chinese market last year which saw declining profits among even some of the industry heavyweights. The country saw a $1.99 billion increase in consumer spend, bringing the total to $42.38 billion, almost twice as high as the number two market, the United States, which drew consumer spend of $24.02 billion.

The US saw the single largest decline in consumer spending, at $3.28 billion, representing almost 52 percent of the total fall and a decline of 12 percent compared to the country’s performance in 2021. This was followed by Japan at $2.73 billion. However, Japan is a smaller market despite coming third in terms of consumer spend overall, and this fall represents a fall of 17 percent compared to Japanese consumer spend in 2021.

Downloads are on the rise

Despite the fall in consumer spending, downloads continued to rise significantly, jumping from 6.67 billion to 89.74 billion.

China stood out with the largest increase in downloads, jumping 2.58 billion to 31.4 billion total, far and away the best performer and accounting for 35 percent of the total. This jump, while notable, should be examined in the context of the Chinese mobile industry, which imposed a hiatus on game licensing in July 2021 which remained in place until April 2022. Although 2022 saw several high profile mobile releases, such as Diablo Immortal and Marvel Snap, it’s possible that the licensing freeze negatively affected download numbers, and that the figures may have been significantly higher had the Chinese market not been affected by these restrictions.

Despite a rise in download figures overall, major markets such as the United States, the United Kingdom, and Saudi Arabia all saw decreases in 2022 compared to 2021. However, download figures and consumer spend are higher overall than pre-pandemic levels, albeit with a few notable exceptions. Download figures in both Singapore and France are at the same levels as in 2019, with Singapore reporting no significant deviation in either direction. On a slightly negative note, download figures in the UK, Canada and the USA are below pre-pandemic levels.

Only one country, Japan, saw declines both in terms of consumer spend and downloads. Despite being seen as a hub for the global games industry, Japan’s gamers have been slow to adapt to mobile technology.