The mobile games market is huge with the worth of the mobile contents market worldwide expected to reach $53.3 billion dollars in 2018. There are more than 100 million mobile gamers in the United States and 70 million mobile gamers in Europe. Every day more than 6.4 million iOS games are downloaded across the globe, and consumer spending is increasing year on year, with in-app purchases being the primary form of spending for mobile gamers.Mass Opportunity.
Mobile gaming is a big opportunity for all kinds of businesses because the cost of entry is significantly lower than it is for other forms of game development. PC and console games require significant budgets, and take a long time to get to market. Mobile games can be developed and deployed more quickly, and can reach a much wider audience of gamers.
The AAA big-budget game development, PC and console markets are still dominated by 18-34-year-old males. Mobile gaming, on the other hand, reaches a much bigger demographic. The core gaming audience is among that demographic, but mobile games are also played by children, and by men and women of all ages. Some forms of gaming, such as social games, attract a demographic that includes a higher percentage of women.Choosing a Platform.
The biggest issue with the mobile games market is the fragmentation of the platform. There is a huge variety of handsets on the market, each with different screen sizes, processors, storage options and operating systems. Some mobile developers choose to limit their games to iOS, because Apple has a smaller range of devices to target, so it is easier to make a game without having to worry about hardware differences. However, if you want to reach the biggest audience possible, or your target demographic does not include iPhone and iPad owners (who tend to be a more affluent group), then you will need to produce games for other platforms.
Windows Phone is making a resurgence, and Microsoft is working hard to support developers and help them release games for the platform. Even better, games developed for Windows Phone can easily be ported to the Microsoft Surface and to Windows desktops.
Android is still the dominant platform in many parts of the world, and because Android is an open platform developers can publish apps quite easily. However, Android has many problems. First, 'discoverability' on the Google Play store is poor. Second, OS and device fragmentation is a serious issue on the Android platform. Piracy has also become a major problem.
Most developers release their apps for modern Android devices and for iOS. They set minimum hardware standards and simply ignore devices that do not meet those standards. If you are targeting customers in the developed world, then this is a good compromise. Instead of releasing premium apps, choose a freemium model where the app is released for free and you make money through in-app purchases. If you have the resources, it is worth considering mobile game creation for the Windows Phone platform. Currently, there are only a handful of apps available for the platform and developers who release apps today have a good chance of securing a large audience.
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