How Important Is Mobile Gaming to the Average Gamer?

Find out how important the general gaming populace believes the mobile gaming market to be. With billions of mobile game downloads every year, it seems almost inevitable that mobile games join the prominence once exclusively owned by consoles. But is it to that point yet?

How Important Is Mobile Gaming to the Average Gamer? Cover

If you have a smartphone device, it’s highly likely you’ve been tempted to download some games at some point. From popular titles like Angry Birds or Candy Crush to recent hits like Genshin Impact, the trail of mobile gaming has increased significantly in recent years. Even with the surge of technology, there is a lot that the general gamer prefers from the home console counterpart. But is that just exclusive thinking? How important is the mobile gaming market?

The following is comprised of data collected through optional polls and viewer responses. What all was collected includes:

  • 866 respondents through eight questions.
  • Polls running between the end of 2020 and the end of February of 2021.
Infograph containing information on the importance of mobile gaming.

Infograph containing information on the importance of mobile gaming.

The following is information collected in more detailed form, going over every aspect of the graph listed above. Summarized information and some occasional discussion will also be present. Information will be provided through the following categories:

  • User data
  • Comparisons and detriments
  • Importance of mobile games

How Much Time Do You Spend Daily on Mobile Games?

One of the more common descriptors of mobile games are their addictive qualities. Titles such as Pokémon GO or Fire Emblem Heroes are simple in design, but hard to put down because of it. Whether through gacha mechanics, AR technology, or the simple pleasures of button-pressing, mobile games dole out the straightforward nature of human-to-technology interaction. How often do people play daily?

Info on hours spent playing mobile games.

Info on hours spent playing mobile games.

An interesting thing about this chart is that it’s not a lower-as-it-goes chart. Many, clearly, otherwise don’t bother with mobile games, but the data fluctuates from there. There are more votes for 5+ hours than either 1-3 or 3-5 hours. While there’s a clear winner, it’d also be accurate to say people are either playing it a lot or not at all. Nevertheless, the results show that, in general, people aren’t playing much on their phones (with games, anyway).

How Many Games Do People Own on Their Phone?

According to Statista, billions of people download mobile games onto their phones every year. With so many downloads, one would expect it to be a prominent part of the general gamer’s daily life. Even so, it could just be that one big must-have for mobile devices. How many mobile games do people actually own in total?

Details on mobile game quantity.

Details on mobile game quantity.

It may very well be just that one big game. Pokémon GO or Genshin Impact may have taken the reigns as the “must-have” titles on mobile, or perhaps PUBG Mobile. If any of those titles don’t appeal to you, there may not be much else out there that could provide the same experience as console games. In general, it seems that the market doesn’t necessitate that you have more than 10 games at any given time, for now.

Do Gamers Prefer Console or Mobile?

For many decades, the home console reigned king as the must-have for stellar gaming. As technology has advanced, computers have become more adept at running games better than even the consoles dedicated solely to gaming. Now smartphones are capable of running games at a high enough quality to become desirable. Given the convenience and packaged gaming on the go, does this trump the current console reign?

Mobile gaming vs. console gaming.

Mobile gaming vs. console gaming.

It’s not quite that time. To the eyes of many, console is still the clear indicator of quality in gaming, even with the sheer popularity of mobile investment. After all, you’re not going to be able to play things like God of War or Halo Infinite on mobile… yet. Until then, and likely whenever mobile gets a handle on some big name, AAA titles, it’ll be the “additional” option, rather than the main course.

Should the Mobile Market Be Taken More Seriously?

Given the reach of mobile gaming, it would make sense that publishers and developers would want to take advantage of the stylized market. A number of different licensed and indie games appear on mobile on a monthly basis, if not more. However, when it comes to fully-fledged games, consoles and PC are still the more technologically advanced versions. Even with this, should the mobile gaming market be taken more seriously?

Info on mobile gaming's importance.

Info on mobile gaming’s importance.

There is some debate amongst the gaming community about the mobile aspect’s importance. At this time, though, there’s not much in regards to a serious push for mobile innovation. Despite the high number of yearly downloads, gamers may think it to be of a “lesser” pastime, of which can’t compare to the console alternative. Should the mobile space continue to innovate, it’s likely to continue to fall under the radar of doubt.

Do Ads Prevent New Players From Trying Mobile?

One aspect of mobile gaming that is entirely its own is the presence of ads within the game. While relatively rare on consoles (but not impossible), many on mobile offer a free price tag in favor of an ad-filled experience, popping up at regular intervals. These interruptions may easily break the flow of the game and cause players to ease away from mobile. Does it?

Info on ads deterring players from trying mobile.

Info on ads deterring players from trying mobile.

Indeed, the proverbial crux to the gamer’s ire appears to be the presence of additional pressure. Ads surrounding gaming are nothing new, but their insistent placement in mobile titles could create a divide between fulfilling gameplay finesse and a cumbersome chore. If the data shows anything, it’s that the mobile market should ease up on the ad implementation if they want gamers to take it more seriously.

Where Do Players Most Like Playing Mobile Games?

Part of the draw to mobile gaming is the compact, play-as-you-go mantra, similar to that of Nintendo’s Switch console. Due to this, players are free to go practically anywhere while playing, especially with games like Pokémon GO encouraging outdoor activity. But with all this freedom, there may not be any incentive to even go anywhere. Where do players most like to play mobile games?

Where players most enjoy playing mobile games.

Where players most enjoy playing mobile games.

Mobile gaming might just be another way to say “home console.” Even with the freedom of place, many still prefer to either stay in their own homes while playing, as well as just staying in bed. One could assume players partake in it late at night before going to bed. And while efforts by recent titles have encouraged more physical activity, it seems there’s nothing better than kicking back and relaxing on the couch.

How Much Are Players Willing to Spend on Mobile Games?

As stated previously, many mobile games come free to players, though with an ad-filled compromise. However, some titles are still prone to charging a specific amount for their games outright, while others will bombard players with in-app purchases and/or microtransactions. Considering the debatably predatory marketing presence in certain mobile titles, how much are players generally willing to spend on mobile?

Info on how much players spend on mobile.

Info on how much players spend on mobile.

Free games are free, and that’s the draw. A considerable sample suggests that if a mobile title isn’t free, then it isn’t worth downloading. A decent amount will also be willing to spend up to $10, but the interesting part of the results stem from the most expensive option. While not too sizeable, more are willing to spend over $20 than the prior, cheaper option, suggesting some manner of influence from the market. But as has been consistent so far, the cheaper and more convenient the option, the better.

What Game Genre Do Players Want to See More of on Mobile?

When you think of mobile games, what do you see? Games where you need to match four of a similar pattern in a row? Auto-scrollers where you only need to tap a button to jump? These are typical scenarios, but wouldn’t it be nice to see more? It’s somewhat rare to have mobile titles branch out into something more ambitious. With that said, what type of game genre do players wish to see more of on mobile?

Info on missing game genres on mobile.

Info on missing game genres on mobile.

The results are all over the place, at least in comparison to the rest of the poll questions. While RPG is the clear winner, one could make the argument that all of these are valuable options, and that “Other” could mean a variety of things. In truth, “variety” could be the defining option. For mobile to further succeed and grow, it should experiment with a large number of genres to appeal to all players. Whether or not that will happen remains to be seen, but some can dream.

Are you a mobile gamer? What do you think of these results? How do you think mobile gaming can be improved or stylized? Let me know in the comments below!
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