December 15, 2020
App Annie predicted that mobile game and app spending will have grown 25 percent to $112 billion in 2020. Director of market insights Amir Ghodrati added that the company will likely revise these numbers upwards at the end of December. Both iOS and Android showed record-breaking growth, with 65 percent of spending going to the former and almost 30 percent to the latter. Apple iOS and Google mobile app and game downloads are expected to reach 130 billion in 2020, up 10 percent from 2019.
VentureBeat reports that, with regard to games, big successes were “Among Us,” “My Talking Tom Friends,” “Roblox” and “Call of Duty: Mobile,” with both “My Talking Tom Friends” and “Roblox” breaking into the top 10 apps by consumer spending this year. Another surprise, said Ghodrati was that “’Pokémon Go’ was very resilient, given that it’s a game where people walk around a lot and meet other people.”
To accommodate COVID-19 restrictions, Niantic tweaked the game “so it could be played social-distanced and remotely,” said Ghodrati, who also added that after vaccines are widely distributed, we’ll “likely see a decline in mobile games.” “We expect it to level off at a level that is higher than what was predicted before,” he said. “Even if there is a slight dip, it’s still going to be noticeably higher than it was before.”
The U.S., Japan and the United Kingdom are the top markets for iOS. Top markets for Google Play include the U.S., South Korea and Germany. Top categories for iOS growth were “games, photo and video, and social networking.” For Google Play, “it was games, entertainment, and social.” Across Apple and Google app stores, games represented 40 percent of total downloads, representing “45 percent of all Google Play downloads … and 30 percent of all downloads on iOS.”
The countries that were “the largest contributors to growth” were India, Brazil and Indonesia for Google Play and the U.S., Japan and Saudi Arabia for iOS. Total time spent using Android phones rose 25 percent to 3.3 trillion hours in 2020. TikTok is “set to break into a billion monthly active users in 2021.”
Elsewhere VB reports that, according to a Vorhaus Advisors survey, 63 percent of gamers “say they would spend more if virtual goods had real-world value and could be traded or sold … and 64 percent say they would also play more often.” VB says this “suggests players could have real demand for games that adopt blockchain, the secure and transparent decentralized ledger technology, that enables virtual items to be tied to real-world goods.”