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Aug 16

Mobile Gaming: An Incredible Smartphone Success Story

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When Apple launched the iPhone in 2007, it’s fair to say it transformed the mobile phone industry. Within a couple of years, a smartphone went from being a device for business people and tech enthusiasts to something everybody wanted.

One wonders if, at the time, Apple ever realised how much smartphones were also going to disrupt the world of gaming. It quickly became clear that the processing power such phones placed in peoples’ pockets was often going to end up being used for gaming sessions – both among casual players and more hardcore gamers.

IMAGE: Pixabay

This trend continues; Research from SurveyMonkey Intelligence shows that 62% of smartphone owners download a game to a new device within the first week of ownership. More people download games than any other type of app in this timeframe. This article takes a delve into the stats and trends to look at exactly what people are playing on their mobile devices.

Puzzle Games

For many, the first kind of game that springs to mind in relation to mobile gaming is one from the puzzle genre. Candy Crush Saga is arguably the best known – and it’s certainly an enormous success.

King Digital Entertainment, the company behind Candy Crush, was acquired by Activision in late 2015. The price the gaming giant paid was just under $6 billion! Who’d have predicted that a fairly rudimentary game involving lining up sweets would become such a money spinner? However, it’s hard to argue with a committed base of nearly 500 million monthly players.

Action Games

Despite the popularity of puzzle games, they’re (somewhat surprisingly) far less popular than games in the “Arcade” and “Action” categories – at least when it comes to downloads. Fast action game Subway Surfers enjoyed particular popularity in this genre in 2016.

Casinos and Slots

Thanks to widespread Wi-Fi and mobile connectivity, it’s now just as easy to enjoy casino gaming on a mobile device as it is on a laptop. People can enjoy online casino experience in the palm of their hand, complete with table games, all the slots and global players recognise, including such classics as Starburst and Rainbow Riches. A big trend in this sector includes official themed games, with slots versions of popular film and television franchises such as Jurassic Park and Game of Thrones offer fans a chance to play for real money or play money.

Augmented Reality

The biggest mobile game of 2016 brought Augmented Reality (AR) to the masses. Its name was Pokemon Go, and it turned out to be the best selling game of the year. As Nintendo’s first real foray into gaming on mobile devices, it was an enormous success and a global sensation – at least while the craze lasted!

IMAGE: Pixabay

Role Playing and Strategy

RPGs and strategy games are also hugely popular on mobile devices, and give the hardcore gamers something to properly get their teeth into. Notable titles include Clash of Clans and Clash Royale. Although role playing and strategy games are far from the most popular in terms of monthly downloads, they top the table when it comes to the revenue companies make from them. These are games that people stick with – and that seems to include buying plenty of in-game extras!

With every year that passes, mobile devices become more popular and ubiquitous. Whether or not Steve Jobs had gaming in mind when he launched the iPhone, smartphones are now a permanent part of that world.