Report: Mobile gaming took nearly 3/4 of global mobile revenue in 2019
Mobile gaming is more popular than ever, according to the latest report released by analytics firm Sensor Tower. Financially speaking, gaming made up approximately US$29.6bn of mobile revenue worldwide between January and June this year.
That figure equates the overall take from the mobile gaming market to be approximately 75%, out of a total of US$39.7bn of mobile app purchases as reported from the U.S.-dominated iOS App Store and Google Play stores, combined.
That gaming makes up approximately 75 percent of all mobile purchases will further bolster confidence in the dominant sector of the digital entertainment market.
During the same period, mobile spending on apps was up 15.4 percent year-on-year. Tinder saw the biggest earning from a non-gaming mobile apps with US$497 million in sales. Meanwhile, gaming enthusiasts invested significantly more on their most popular titles.
During the first half of the year, Tencent's Honor of Kings dominated with US$728mn in sales. Meanshile, Sony Aniplex's Fate/Grand Order came a close second with US$628mn.
All in all, revenue for mobile games went up by 11.3% compared with 2018, and new mobile games downloads reached 20.1bn.
Other popular titles included Tencent's PUBG Mobile, Mixi's Monster Strike and King's Candy Crush Saga. These offerings rounded out the top 5 gaming titles based by customer spend.
Among the main earners, two are published by Chinese gaming behemoth Tencent, with 2 more hailing from neighboring Japan. Only 1 mobile app, Candy Crush Saga, comes from the west.
Japan and China's success in this area should not be taken lightly. Both nations are clearly clued in to consumer demands on both a domestic and international level.
Not every title was an instant hit. In fact, many new games struggled to hold their own against mobile's heavyweights. In terms of in-app purchases, Niantic's Harry Potter: Wizards Unite performed dissappointingly during its launch compared to Pokémon Go, its highly-successful predecessor.
The gaming industry may be one of the most profitable ways of making money from smartphone use, but it takes time and luck to create a fan base willing to invest their money into making regular micro-transactions for items such as costume skins or loot boxes.
Broadly speaking, revenue from Apple's App Store and Google Play reached US$39.7 billion –up 15.4% from the US$34.4bn consumers shelled out across the two stores in the first six months of 2018.
Netflix was the 2nd highest earning non-game app during this period with estimated consumer spending of close to $399mn globally. It was number one for in-app revenue last year, but has fallen in revenue following a decision to remove subscriptions from the iOS version of the app, according to the report's authors.
With WhatsApp, Messenger, and Facebook holding onto the top of the chart, the top three apps by global download numbers remained stable over the first half of last year.
Once again, short-video platform TikTok beat Instagram to claim the 4th position in the list of most downloaded apps around the world.
The multimedia messaging app owned by Beijing-based start-up ByteDance saw its 1st-time downloads grow about 28% year-on-year for the half to nearly 344mn worldwide despite a recent 2-week ban in India.