That mobile games have been growing a lot lately is nothing new, but the recent State of Mobile Gaming 2021 made by Sensor Tower, shows that even during the pandemic its growth was impressive, We can see the evolution of the revenue through each quarter. It spiked during the start of the COVID-19 pandemic and had the biggest year-to-year growth in Q2 of 2020 reaching a raise of 33%. The mobile gaming industry earned more than 20 billion dollars globally each quarter and this steady pace of revenue doesn’t seem to be slowing down in 2021 too, we can see that there was a 25% year-to-year growth in Q1 of 2021. Those numbers are astonishing.
The United States continues to be the leading mobile gaming market, having surpassed Japan in Q2 2019, reaching $6 billion in revenue in Q1 2021. In Q2 2020, COVID-19 increased the player spending by 35% from the previous quarter. Even though there was a minor drop in revenue in two quarters of 2020, the growth of the revenue resumed in Q1 2021.
The next biggest markets were Japan and China, way ahead of any other country. Japan’s revenue increased 35 percent Y/Y in Q1 2021, while China’s also continued to grow even though Google Play is not available in the country.
Over the last few years, countries outside of the top five have also progressively increased their market share, which means that mobile game publishers have shifted their focus to less-developed regions with more growth potential. In the first quarter of 2021, game downloads in India increased by nearly half a billion over the previous quarter. Countries like Indonesia, Mexico and Brazil also saw a huge increase above 100 million.
Each of the top five countries by download growth had at least 90 percent of their installs from Google Play, with less than 10 percent from the App Store. This reflected the trends on each platform, as Google Play installs climbed 66 percent between Q1 2018 and Q1 2021, while App Store download growth was flat over this period
The revenue of mobile gaming industry growth skyrocketed during the pandemic. In Q1 2021, consumer spending surpassed $22 billion, an all-time record and a 25% year-over-year increase. And from that amount, more than two-thirds comes from just three countries: U.S., Japan, and China. It’s improbable that any other country will compete with these top 3 countries anytime soon. Still, we’re seeing a trend of game developers trying to expand in fast-growing regions, such as India and Brazil.
Mobile gaming keeps breaking growth records quarter after quarter, do you think it has already reached a limit or this explosion of mobile games still has room to grow?