The mobile gaming industry has been steadily on the rise. It has been asserting its dominance in the gaming world for years now. Whether you are a professional gamer, beginner, developer, marketer, investor, or simply an enthusiast, you will be stunned to learn that the number of users is expected to reach 2.3 billion by 2027 worldwide.
Mind-blowing right? We are not shocked, considering the global penetration of smartphones and how accessible it is even in remote areas. There are over 5.2 billion smartphone users, accounting for more than half of the world’s population.
These stats only ensure the potential of the mobile gaming industry and the future that it currently holds. In regions like India, Southeast Asia, and Latin America, smartphones have become more affordable and accessible, driving millions of new gamers into the fold.
However, this isn’t the only aspect that flourishes with the gaming industry. It brings in massive opportunity and revenue generation from sectors such as live streaming, Tournaments, and other in-game activities.
This guide delves into the statistics of the global mobile gaming industry in 2023 and what the future holds.
Live Streaming, Tournaments, and In-game Excitement – How Do These Factors Affect the Gaming Industry
As discussed earlier, more than half of the population currently owns smartphones. And this accessibility has brought in more and more players.
But some factors, such as Live Streaming and Tournaments, have kept players glued to their screens for hours daily.
Live Streaming platforms such as Twitch, YouTube Gaming, and Facebook have seen explosive growth in the last few years. Especially during the pandemic when youth resorted to staying at home and playing mobile games.
These platforms allow users to showcase their skills, create a community, and serve as a path to earn a living through it. People of all ages are inspired and also love seeing professionals play for hours.
Do you have a teenage sibling? If you do, then you might have seen them watching YouTube for hours now. The eSports Tournaments are considered one of the biggest sports tournaments you might have ever seen.
These competitions offer gamers a handsome sum of money worldwide and a platform to be the best. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg when we talk about the mobile gaming industry and how it has paved a new profession and path for gamers everywhere.
Market Size & Revenue
The market size is expected to reach US$173.60bn by the end of 2023. This market size is noteworthy, particularly when compared to traditional gaming platforms. The market size of mobile gaming isn’t just impressive due to its revenue; it’s also notable for its global reach.
With over 5.2 billion smartphone users worldwide, the potential player base is immense and is likely to grow further.
Furthermore, it isn’t only limited to the number of smartphone users. But also other revenue models such as in-game purchases such as skins while playing PUBG, weapons, upgrades, and more.
The United States continues to dominate the Mobile gaming industry, accounting for approximately 29% of global mobile player spending.
Games (Most Downloaded, Played, and Grossed)
Now, coming to mobile games, one of the most popular among all is PUBG, creating a gross revenue of $636.70 million in the first eight months of 2023. However, the year’s pinnacle contributing to the highest grossing is Honor of Kings, with $934 million.
These aren’t the only games on the list; we also have Candy Crush Saga, Genshin Impact, and many more.
➡️ Most Downloaded Games
Moving on, Subway Surfer continues dominating the market, being the most downloaded game for years.
While in 2022, the game was downloaded 304 million times, it has gathered 4 billion downloads worldwide since its launch in 2012. Followed by Roblox and Candy Crush Saga, which was also at the top of the charts last year.
➡️ Most Played Games
Speaking of the most played game, you will be surprised that Garena Free Fire takes the #1 spot. The best part about this game is that it does not require any fancy or high-end smartphone. Anyone and everyone can play it easily.
Even though it is banned in a few countries (such as India), it has managed to acquire 725 million peak quarterly active users as of August 2023.
➡️ Most Popular Gaming Genre
Have you considered the most popular gaming genre you might miss out on? The top three worldwide are RPG, Strategy, and Puzzle. RPG constitutes $25.5 billion in gross revenues, while Strategy remains #2 with $12.1 billion.
In the United States, gamers have been loving puzzles and card games such as Solitaire. This constitutes up to 18% of gamers who have opted for puzzle games on their smartphones as opposed to RPG games.
Publishers & Companies
The gaming industry isn’t limited to the games played worldwide but also the leading publishers and companies creating this mobile gaming market.
Speaking of the leading iPhone gaming App publishers worldwide, Shenzhen Tencent Tianyou Technology Ltd. gained the crown in the market with $95.5 million in in-app revenues.
Shenzhen Tencent Tianyou Technology Ltd. is a subsidiary of Tencent Holdings Limited, one of the world’s largest and most influential technology companies. They have designed games such as Contra Returns, PUBG Mobile, Honor of Kings, and many other popular games.
Similarly, the leading Gaming App Publisher for Android users has been King Gaming, with approximately $50.9 million in in-app revenues. This publisher is popular and known for its iconic game Candy Crush Saga, which we all have had once on our smartphones. Furthermore, they have also published various casual and social games, such as Farm Heroes Saga and Pet Rescue Saga.
Apart from this, Roblox made approx $2.2 billion in 2022. While in 2021, they increased up to 107%. This platform allows users to design, create, and play games created by other users. It is one of the leading revenue generators for iPhone gaming, with $3 million daily revenue.
App Store (Apple, Google Play, and Amazon)
While the App Store has many categories available, including business, gaming, education, finance, and many more, mobile games have consistently been among the most popular categories for years.
On the Apple Store, games take up a share of 12.68% of all iOS apps available on the platform. This includes both revenue and downloads of games in multiple genres such as F2P, Puzzle, Shooter, etc.
Furthermore, there were over 208,000 mobile gaming apps on the app store in 2022, including both free and paid games. The number has significantly decreased as opposed to the previous quarter in 2022 since Apple has been taking several measures.
Speaking of the Google App Store, the number is much higher, i.e., over 490,000 mobile gaming apps. Android is known for its open ecosystem, making it easier for developers to publish apps, including games, without strict approval processes; hence, this number is much higher.
However, beating all odds, the Amazon App Store constitutes approximately 114,601 mobile gaming apps as of 2022; the number is much higher at this moment.
Now that we have discussed and understood the overall market of the mobile gaming industry in reference to the App Store, Downloads, Categories, Genre, and Publishers, another important aspect that alters these stats is Demographics.
Mobile gaming demographics have evolved significantly over the years as smartphones have become increasingly widespread and gaming apps more diverse. It becomes crucial for any developer or even investors to develop a game based on what users are looking for based on age, gender, spending habits, timings, and more.
➡️ Age Factor
It is calculated that people who play the most games are mostly under the age of 24-34 years, i.e., 29.5%. The next big number fall under the age of 16-24, that are mostly Gen Z and have been growing in number each second.
However, we cannot ignore the fact that people of all age groups play games whether they are 60+ or they are below 10 years of age.
To add more here, according to the research conducted by Facebook across 12 countries, around 43% of mobile gamers were parents who spent 2-3 hours playing games on average.
When it comes to gender-related stats around the mobile gaming industry, 53.6% of mobile game players are men, and 46.4% are women, as reported by GWI. It is believed that three-quarters of women play games worldwide.
However, not all of them consider themselves as gamers. Most of them prefer playing it on a mobile phone as opposed to other gaming consoles such as PC, Playstation, etc.
➡️ Money Spent
One of the major revenue added to the mobile gaming industry is the in-app purchases. Gamers spend around $108 billion worldwide on buying skins, weapons, and other purchases directly from their games, adding to the overall revenue.
The average money spent here ranges from $10 – $100 based on the type of user. Mostly, the range is less than $10, which is 55.8% of total users residing in the United States.
So that is all you need to know about the mobile gaming industry statistics in 2023. We are still underway, with a few months left to spare this year and a lot more to come in the gaming industry.
In terms of both market size and revenue, it is more likely to grow in the coming years. More and more games are being added to the App Store and are quickly becoming popular. PUBG was launched in March 2017 and became one of the most popular within a short span of time worldwide.
We are only looking forward for the mobile gaming industry to break more records and add billions of dollars in its revenue, and the number of users is more likely to increase in the coming years.
Since we’re here and talking about the mobile gaming industry, why not take a look at our list of the most popular mobile games of all time?
Kanika is a freelance writer that is looking to add meaning to what you read and consume in the digital World for 7 years now. She loves writing about Gaming related content for both pro and casual Gamers. You can find hundreds of reviews, guides,… read more