Mobile Revenues Account for More Than 50% of the Global Games Market as It Reaches $137.9 Billion in 2018

The Games Market Is on Track for a Decade of Double-Digit Growth

In our latest update, we also present our forecasts for the global games market toward 2021. We expect that consumer spend on games will grow to $180.1 billion by 2021, a CAGR of +10.3% between 2017 and 2021.

Mobile Gaming to Be a 100-Billion-Dollar Market by 2021

In the span of a decade, mobile gaming will have grown from the smallest segment in 2012 to a 100-billion-dollar industry in 2021. Remarkably, the rise of mobile gaming has not significantly cannibalized revenues from PC or console gaming markets. In the coming years, mobile game revenue growth will continue to outpace the overall games market, growing to $106.4 billion in 2021. By then, smartphone and tablet games combined will generate 59% of revenues in the entire market.

The Future Also Looks Bright for PC and Console

Downloaded/boxed PC games will grow with a CAGR of +4.2% from 2017 to 2021, generating $32.3 billion in 2021. While we expect engagement with PC games to continue to grow, driven by competitive play and esports, this will only partially translate to higher revenues for several reasons. Most importantly, we believe that some of the most popular titles are already operating at close to their full monetization potential and, at the same time, are unlikely to be displaced by new games soon. In addition, average prices for pay-to-play PC games have been declining in recent years, putting downward pressure on the segment’s overall revenue growth. The total PC gaming market will grow at a CAGR of +1.8% between 2017 and 2021 as the continued shift from browser PC to mobile games cuts revenues from the browser segment in half between 2017 and 2021.

Japanese Gamers Spend the Most, making it the #3 Country Globally

The Japanese gaming market will still be the third-largest in the world in 2018 (behind the United States and China), growing +15.1% year on year to $19.2 billion. Due to the continued success of mobile gaming companies in Japan, we increased our estimate for Japan’s mobile games market for the second time in a year. This means its mobile games market is now nearly the same size as North America’s with roughly one-third of the number of gamers. In fact, Japanese gamers spend most of any country, particularly for mobile games. The average spend per payer in Japan is 1.5 times higher than in North America, and more than 2.5 times higher than in Western Europe.

Global Games Market Forecasting Methodology

Newzoo’s Global Games Market Forecast Model projects gamer numbers and revenues per segment and region on a global, regional, and country level. It also shows the share of paying gamers and average spend at the same level of granularity. These projections are analyzed in multiple ways, comparing year-on-year growth rates, market share, CAGRs, and absolute amounts in USD between the regions and segments, as well as the development of specific regions or segments in time. Projections are compared to available third-party sources on a local or global level. Given the pace of the developments in the games industry, Newzoo reviews its conclusions and assumptions every quarter, considering newly available data and insights. Before publication of any data, Newzoo also performs various validation checks, including comparison against historical internal data, comparison against market figures from alternative sources, and validation from several Newzoo clients.

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Newzoo

Founded in 2007, we are the leading global provider of games and esports analytics. Amsterdam | San Francisco | Shanghai. Drop by www.newzoo.com to learn more!