Mobile is projected to account for 56% of gaming revenue in 2023, compared to 22% for consoles and 21% for desktop, according data projections from data.ai and IDC. Despite experiencing its first decline in its history in 2022, the segment seems set for a resurgence in 2023.
Perhaps predictably, accessibility is identified as a key factor. The evolution of technology has placed mobile at the forefront of gaming, thanks to increasing internet penetration worldwide, affordability, and portability. While PC and consoles offer more power, they also require a significantly larger investment, making them less appealing for casual audiences.
Meanwhile, mobile is continuously implementing the latest hardware to improve the visual appeal of its games, giving gamers improved graphics and performance.
East vs. West
Meanwhile a recent report by Coda Payments, examining the spending habits of mobile gamers in the East and West reveals that over 90% of mobile gamers are willing to make in-game purchases, however there are significant differences in where consumers in each region are spending their money.
Mobile gamers in Eastern countries are more likely to be motivated by customisation and collectible elements, and as such are more likely to purchase cosmetic items such as limited-time items, characters, or cosmetics. In contrast, users in the West are often driven by game design and as such prefer to spend their money on unlocking new modes, levels, or game maps.
Consumers in the West spend an average of $72.47 a month on direct purchases, compared to $30.70 a month in the East. Coda Payments notes that the West typically has stronger currency, giving users in countries such as Britain and the USA more spending power.
Notably, the report finds that female gamers in Western countries spend an average more than $22.93 more on mobile gaming than their male counterparts, highlighting once again the popularity of mobile gaming among women.
The report also notes that, while e-wallets are particularly popular as a payment method in the East, Western consumers prefer to make payments via debit and credit cards.
Gamers in the East spend more time playing mobile games than in Western nations, with 40% playing for more than 16 hours a week, compared to just 33% of gamers in the West.
Thailand emerged as the country where gamers are the most engaged, with a massive 45% playing for more than 16 hours every week. This was followed by Indonesia (43%) and the Philippines (40%).
Among Western nations, Brazil proved to be the country with the most engaged mobile gamers, with 36% playing for more than 16 hours, compared to 33% in Mexico and 30% of the USA. Brazil and Mexico’s strength highlights once again the strength of Latin America, one of the world’s fastest growing mobile markets. Brazil in particular is an established mobile powerhouse, with 38% of all games developed within the country being mobile titles.