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Home Blog Mobile Game & App Insights Opportunities for The Mobile Gaming Industry in The Post-Pandemic Era in 2021

Opportunities for The Mobile Gaming Industry in The Post-Pandemic Era in 2021

Apr 14 2021

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In the new year, many people are concerned about the game industry in 2021 will be as rapid growth as the previous year? This question has been answered in the affirmative by many practitioners, pointing out various clues that are traceable.

Of course, the industry trend itself is a movement toward a goal on an unclear and vague trajectory, just as Nintendo saw the huge potential of mobile users base 20 years earlier, but the right path to that goal was mobile gaming.

Mobile game market grows against the trend during the pandemic period

Data from the Mobile Games Market Report 2021 again shows that mobile games dominate the mobile app business, especially in terms of revenue. in 2020, user spending on apps is $143 billion. Of that amount, $100 billion is spent on games. In other words, for every $1 users spend on iOS and Google Play, games account for 70 cents of that. 

Games also have the upper hand in downloads, but not by as much. 36% of mobile apps downloaded by users in 2020 will be games, or 80 billion of the 218 billion downloads.

In 2020, users spend 296 billion hours on mobile games, up 35% from 222 billion hours in 2019.

At 80 billion downloads in 2020, the growth rate of games is 2.5 times higher than the growth of overall app downloads across all categories.

Despite the overall weak demand in the advertising industry, advertising will remain an important way for mobile games to cash in 2020.

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Mobile games still have huge profit margins under the pandemic


In fact, mobile advertising is driving the entire advertising industry in 2020, and games are a major contributor. In MoPub's trading platform, interstitial and incentivized video ads generate 80% of game revenue.

We also found that user engagement with gaming ads is at its highest level ever, with daily active user display on the ironSource ad brokerage platform up 51% year-over-year.

The percentage of gamers among all consumers is at an unprecedented level. 2020, they want to be entertained, interact in person and pass the time while maintaining social isolation, all from their portable gaming consoles - their cell phones.

In short, these numbers show that mobile gaming as a platform has achieved a significant uptick.

And this, in a market that is only a decade old and in which game products are either free or support in-app purchases. 

Mobile gaming is poised to continue its momentum in 2021, and we expect mobile gaming user spending to exceed $120 billion this year (up 20% from 2020). That's 50% more than user spending on consoles, PCs, Macs, and handhelds combined.

New content brings new profit growth

Therefore, for the trend analysis or prediction of game industry in 2021, we have summarized the opinion statements of many practitioners, more from the current goals and challenges faced, to see those directions that will have higher possibility in the new year.

Recently, Sensor Tower released the 2021 first quarter mobile game industry data report, the report shows that this year's Q1 global mobile game user spending up to 22.2 billion U.S. dollars, a substantial 25% more than the same period last year; the number of mobile game downloads in the first quarter reached 14 billion times, the first time to reach 5% growth.

This report card undoubtedly once again verifies the development potential of the game industry, as a game industry practitioners, we need to have a grasp of the future development trend of the game industry, the next ASO World to talk to you about the game industry in 2021 is happening four major trends:.

Gaming market development will slow down but still maintain growth

In the past decade, the game industry has maintained a high growth trend, and the "house economy" spawned by the 2020 epidemic has contributed to this growth trend.

Objectively speaking, in 2021, the domestic epidemic prevention and control situation will continue to improve, people will start to resume normal life, and the game market development will slow down. In the short term, the game industry still maintains the trend of accelerated growth because people will keep the game habit for a long time, and the Q1 report card released by Sensor Tower also confirms this.

Game products will develop in the direction of content

In the past few years, there have been a lot of explosive games, including "PUBG mobile" and "Among Us", all of which have achieved quite good results.

First, this is due to the great influence and strong vitality of IP; second, for the global market, these games continue to optimize the game experience and continue to output rich game content; third, the fierce competition makes the game gradually move towards boutique, and the gradual normalization of game number approval also effectively promotes the game industry to develop in a more sustainable direction and promotes the whole industry to maintain a healthy ecology.

To sum up, the three elements of "IP, optimization and operation" make the game lifeline extended.

In fact, in recent years, the mobile game market still shows a continuous growth trend. Compared with video games, the most powerful advantage of handheld games is that, as long as there is a cell phone and network, you can use fragmented time to get fun in the game anytime and anywhere.

Moreover, the performance of cell phones is getting better and better, and although the quality of the game is not comparable to that of the end game, the overall experience has been greatly improved, and more and more people are putting themselves into the embrace of mobile games.

Significant increase in workday game time, mobile game market grows against the trend during the pandemic


A sudden pandemic of new crowns in the early 2020s has caused a huge impact across all industries, and the gaming industry is certainly no exception.

As people begin to find new ways to entertain themselves and stay connected with others, we are seeing an unprecedented rise in consumer demand and a change in some of our previous spending habits. Today, there is a growing population of people who play and watch and stream games, both new and "lost" players.

Whether it's the millions of people who work from home or those who have more free time because of home isolation, the length of time people spend playing handheld games will also increase as the time spent playing computer and console games has increased recently. 

The audience for handheld games has seen a new round of breakthroughs throughout the first quarter, so is the handheld game market really hot or is it a "flash in the pan" during the pandemic.

Developers, publishers and marketers want to understand players' changing motivations for playing games, acquire more new players, maintain and retain old players, and ultimately, find out how these global macro shifts are impacting the long-term health of the gaming industry.

To address these needs and provide insight into trends for the coming year, we conducted new research on player behavior, providing insight into their motivations, preferences, and habits for playing games.


The outlook for the mobile gaming market in 2021


In addition, we illustrate the increasingly important role that community plays, especially at this particular time. Finally, we took a broader look at everyday consumer behavior and explored how game companies can reach players on their favorite platforms in this era of cross-platform consumption.

While the coming months may bring more variables, we are now more eager than ever to continue working with our gaming partners to build a global gaming community.



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