An overview of the mobile games market and the growth of VR and AR

Nick Parker breaks out a bunch of big numbers

An overview of the mobile games market and the growth of VR and AR

At Pocket Gamer Connects London 2018, freelance consultant Nick Parker gave an overview of the mobile games industry in numbers.

He started by showing that while the smartphone install base will continue to grow continuously, mobile games revenues "will start to plateau", largely because people are starting to download less games, but play them for longer.

This is evidence by the slow growth of mobile game downloads in the US, which has grown very slightly between 2012 and 2017, especially when compared to every other region around the world.

"95% of all mobile games revenue is coming from the free-to-play model," Parker noted, a figure which is also continuing to rise in every region.

Revenues and VR

The majority of these revenues are coming from IAPs, especially for larger developers – ad revenue made up less than 10% of overall mobile revenues for developers such as Activision Blizzard and EA Mobile.

Moving away from mobile to AR and VR, Parker showed estimates that mobile VR will become the most popular platforms, with Google Daydream set to surpass 14 million installed units by 2020.

For AR, Parker suggested that while Apple's ARKit currently has the most devices out in the world capable of using the technology, Google's ARCore could overtake the install base of Apple's offering in 2019 and more than double it by 2021.


Ric is the Editor of, having started out as a Staff Writer on the site back in 2015. He received an honourable mention in both the MCV and Develop 30 Under 30 lists in 2016 and refuses to let anyone forget about it.