Mobile Gaming Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2022 - 2027)

The Mobile Gaming Market is segmented by Monetization Type (In-app Purchases, Paid Apps, Advertising) , by Platform (Android, iOS and Other third party stores) and Geography.

Market Snapshot

Mobile Games Market Overview
Study Period: 2019- 2026
Base Year: 2021
Fastest Growing Market: Asia-Pacific
Largest Market: Asia-Pacific
CAGR: 12.3 %

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Market Overview

The mobile gaming market is expected to register a CAGR of 12.3% during the forecast period, 2021 - 2026. The growing smartphone penetration and technology advancement with the increasing adoption of trending technologies for developing games are major factors in developing the mobile gaming industry.​

  • The growing smartphone penetration and technology advancement with the increasing adoption of trending technologies for developing games are major factors in developing the mobile gaming industry.
  • The gaming industry worldwide is expanding, and smartphone is playing a significant role in this expansion. The development of mobile games has resulted in scalability for the gaming industry. Platforms like Facebook and Instagram have also started to develop innovative mobile games to ensure high product differentiation and benefit from engaging games to enhance their advertisement strategies.
  • Smartphone hardware capabilities have rapidly increased during the last couple of years. According to Unity Technologies, the better mobile chipsets provide greater performance with less battery drain, powering higher screen resolutions on display sizes that now average 6 inches. Furthermore, according to Ericsson, 5G allowed for incredible speeds (20 x 4G) and low latency (20 ms to 5 ms). Because of that, the market sees more and more high-production-value AAA-quality mobile games.
  • In-game purchase, i.e., the option to purchase additional privileges within the games, is a significant revenue-generating channel for the mobile gaming industry. The flexibility for in-game payment methods is also facilitating the growth of mobile gaming revenues worldwide.
  • Despite geopolitical tensions, the growing smartphone penetration and increasing gaming options are also increasing the mobile gaming penetration in many parts of the world. For instance, according to White Designers Game Studios, in Iran, with a population of 82 million and a smartphone penetration rate of about 35% (in 2018), there are more than 30 million active mobile gaming players in the country.
  • As most countries globally are under lockdown to control the spread of the virus, there has been significant growth in the consumption of digital entertainment, including mobile games. The major gaming vendors have witnessed strong growth in downloads of multiple types of mobile games in the COVID-19 affected markets.

Scope of the Report

Gaming is defined as playing electronic games conducted through multiple varieties of means, such as through the use of computers, mobile phones, consoles, or another medium altogether. There is an increasing prevalence of high-speed internet connections, especially in emerging economies, which has made online gaming practical for more people in recent years. ​

Other Third-party Stores (Third-party Android App Stores such as Amazon Appstore, Samsung Galaxy Store, Garena, and All Existing Android App Stores in China where Google Play is Not Available)​
North America
United States
United Kingdom
Rest of Europe
Asia Pacific
South Korea
Rest of Asia Pacific
Rest of the World

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Key Market Trends

Free-to-play Pricing Model Offers Potential Growth

  • Free-to-play is the pricing model preferred by most mobile game developers because of its unlimited potential and can be downloaded without any charge. This allows players to sample a game before deciding whether they want to commit time or money and tend to accrue higher revenues.
  • The strategy adopted by free-to-play games is to introduce in-app purchases of certain items, which enable players to perform better or pass certain obstacles faster. Memory hacking simply isolates the storage point of these items and gives hackers access to unlimited in-game cash or gold. In most mobile games, the actions performed by the player are recorded on the local device itself and batched up before being transmitted to the server. This prevents network lag and makes the gaming experience better. This enables hackers to use memory hacking tools and target item batches and attach a modification tool to gain access to the app’s memory and sometimes in-app payments.
  • Moreover, this model is expected to evolve with the development of technologies such as augmented reality and 5G. With the deployment of 5G, coupled with faster download speeds, it is expected by the advertising videos to increase in quality and engagement.
  • In India, as of 2021, Free Fire was the most popular gaming app based on active users. Other popular online games during that period included MPL and Dream11 belonging to the fantasy sport and fantasy genres, respectively. In the United States, the COVID-19 pandemic revealed how games could benefit from having a strong social component. Many multiplayer games like Roblox and Among Us had a breakthrough year in 2020.
  • Casual games like CandyCrush are no-obligation, ‘Pick Up and Play’ games, usually available as a free download and monetized by ads. Casual games make up 78% of all mobile game downloads, as well as generate 23% of total revenue. The success of casual game ‘Among Us’ can be attributed to key influencers adopting the game on gaming TV channel Twitch in July 2020, followed by a spike of almost 295 million monthly active users in October, and becoming the number one game by YOY download growth in Argentina, Canada, US, Mexico, Australia, South Korea, and the UK.
  • Therefore, due to the factors mentioned above, the free-to-play pricing model is expected to drive mobile gaming in the future.
Mobile Games Market Key Trends

Asia Pacific to Witness the Highest Growth

The increasing smartphone penetration, rapidly changing consumer preferences, increasing competition, and untapped demographics are major factors driving the gaming companies to invest in the Indian mobile gaming market.​

  • India is one of the fastest-growing smartphone markets globally, with the number of smartphones expected to double by 2022 nearly. Much of this active user base comes from rural India, where mobile gaming is still gaining popularity.​
  • In September 2020, Microsoft Corporation launched its cloud-based video game streaming service in Japan, expanding its investment into one of the world's largest gaming arenas. The streaming service's debut shows Microsoft's commitment to the fastest-growing market for Game Pass subscriptions.
  • According to Google, more than 60% of India's online gamers are in the 18-24 age group. Young users play online games on their smartphones, leading to a surge in gaming apps downloads. The company also estimates that there will be 310 million online gamers in India by 2021, mainly due to ease of access to gaming payment options and the high occurrence of smartphone use.
  • Due to affordable gaming experience, India is now in the top five markets in the world based on the number of users for online and mobile gaming. According to NASSCOM data estimates, the Indian mobile gaming market will reach 628 million users by 2020. However, this number is expected to increase due to the positive impact resulting from coronavirus.
  • In addition, the region also witnessed Mergers and Acquisitions. For instance, In January 2021, Tencent acquired a majority stake in Canadian game developer Klei Entertainment that worked with Tencent to launch Don't Starve Together in China. Earlier, in December 2020, Tencent announced the take over of Leyou Technologies Holdings, which included Warfame developers Digital Extremes, UK studio Splash Damage, and Athlon Games.
Mobile Games Market Growth Rate

Competitive Landscape

The mobile gaming market is competitive in nature because of the presence of major players like Tencent Holdings Limited, Activision Blizzard, Inc, and Zynga, Inc., among others. Major companies are developing advanced technologies and launching new products to stay competitive in the market. Seeing the growth opportunity in the market, companies are entering the market. For example, in India, the number of game-developing companies grew from 25 in 2010 to over 250 in 2018. Some of the recent developments in the market are:

  • May 2021- NetEase announced the launch of new games for their diverse portfolio of mobile as well as a personal computer and also contained updates for over 60 products at its Seventh Annual Product Launch.
  • August 2021- Netflix began testing its games inside their android app for their members in Poland. The paying subscribers will try out two games, "Stranger Things: 1984" and "Stranger Things 3".

Recent Developments

  • July 2021- Gamestacy announced its partnership with Beamable to launch Influenzer, a unique social, Multiplayer mobile game. This soft launch is anticipated to usher new options for gender-specific games in the rapidly growing mobile games market.
  • May 2021- OnMobile Global Limited, the global leader in mobile entertainment, has launched a new B2B gaming product, Challenges Arena, a single destination of everyday challenges that provides an unparalleled gamified experience.

Table of Contents


    1. 1.1 Study Assumptions and Market Definition

    2. 1.2 Scope of the Study




    1. 4.1 Market Overview

    2. 4.2 Industry Value Chain Analysis

    3. 4.3 Industry Attractiveness - Porter's Five Forces Analysis

      1. 4.3.1 Bargaining Power of Suppliers

      2. 4.3.2 Bargaining Power of Buyers

      3. 4.3.3 Threat of New Entrants

      4. 4.3.4 Intensity of Competitive Rivalry

      5. 4.3.5 Threat of Substitute Products

    4. 4.4 Impact of COVID-19 on the Mobile Gaming Market​

    5. 4.5 Market Drivers

      1. 4.5.1 Increasing Smartphone Penetration

      2. 4.5.2 Growth in Cloud Adoption

    6. 4.6 Market Restraints

      1. 4.6.1 User Privacy and Security Issues Along with Government Regulations


    1. 5.1 Cloud Gaming

    2. 5.2 Augment Reality Gaming

    3. 5.3 Cross Platform Pay

    4. 5.4 Blockchain Based Game

    5. 5.5 Casual Games

    6. 5.6 Multiplayer Mobile Players


    1. 6.1 In-games Awards

    2. 6.2 Rewarded Adds/Videos

    3. 6.3 In App Purchase ( Various Elements like Coins, Diamonds, Energy Boosters, etc.)

    4. 6.4 Paid Games


    1. 7.1 Pre-registration Campaigns

    2. 7.2 Create Promotional Videos

    3. 7.3 Start with Cross-Promotion with Other Games

    4. 7.4 Localization

    5. 7.5 KPI-Based Mobile Ads


    1. 8.1 Platform

      1. 8.1.1 Android​

      2. 8.1.2 iOS

      3. 8.1.3 Other Third-party Stores (Third-party Android App Stores such as Amazon Appstore, Samsung Galaxy Store, Garena, and All Existing Android App Stores in China where Google Play is Not Available)​

    2. 8.2 Geography

      1. 8.2.1 North America

        1. United States

        2. Canada

      2. 8.2.2 Europe

        1. Germany

        2. United Kingdom

        3. France

        4. Italy

        5. Russia

        6. Rest of Europe

      3. 8.2.3 Asia Pacific

        1. China

        2. Japan

        3. India

        4. South Korea

        5. Rest of Asia Pacific

      4. 8.2.4 Rest of the World


    1. 9.1 Company Profiles*

      1. 9.1.1 Tencent Holdings Limited

      2. 9.1.2 Nintendo Co. Ltd

      3. 9.1.3 Activision Blizzard Inc.

      4. 9.1.4 Zynga Inc.

      5. 9.1.5 GungHo Online Entertainment Inc. ( SoftBank Group)

      6. 9.1.6 Electronic Arts Inc.

      7. 9.1.7 Kabam Games Inc.

      8. 9.1.8 Rovio Entertainment Corporation

      9. 9.1.9 Games Inc. (Take-two Interactive)

      10. 9.1.10 NetEase Inc.



**Subject to Availability

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Frequently Asked Questions

The Mobile Gaming Market market is studied from 2019 - 2026.

The Mobile Gaming Market is growing at a CAGR of 12.3% over the next 5 years.

Asia-Pacific is growing at the highest CAGR over 2021- 2026.

Asia-Pacific holds highest share in 2020.

Tencent Holdings Limited, Activision Blizzard, Inc, Electronic Arts Inc., Nintendo Co., Ltd., GungHo Online Entertainment, Inc ( SoftBank Group) are the major companies operating in Mobile Gaming Market.

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