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25+ Mobile Gaming Demographics: Fully Researched (Jul 2022)

Ten or fifteen odd years ago, no one would’ve ever thought to see mobile gaming become its own industry. Mobile gamers didn’t even exist at that time yet. You only had people who played mobile games on their phones.

Mobile games weren’t even something that could compete against PC gaming and console gaming a decade or so ago, but here we are. Mobile gaming industry has become a giant in itself, and it’s beating out other segments of the video game industry by a huge margin.

In this article, we’ll be looking at some important mobile gaming demographics that let us know why the mobile game market is where it’s at right now and find out where it’s headed in the next few years.

Key Mobile Gaming Demographics and Statistics

  • Smartphone games had a 45% revenue share of the entire video gaming industry revenue as of 2022 (1).
  • In the USA alone, mobile gaming revenue reached $41.7 billion as of 2022, more than the entire revenue of the digital video games industry for 2021 (2).
  • As of 2021, there are 151.3 million mobile gamers in the USA, or people who play games on their phones. It’s projected that this number will go even higher and reach 181 million by 2027 (3).
  • F2P or Free To Play mobile games generated a revenue of $13.78 billion in the USA for the year 2021 (6)
  • The mobile gaming content market value of North America is estimated to reach $29.1 billion by the end of 22 (8).
  • Asia Pacific has the highest number of mobile gamers with 1.2 billion, followed by Europe and Latin America (15)
  • 8.2% of kids in North America spent more than $100 on average for microtransactions and in-app purchases for mobile games
  • Genshin Impact only took 6 months to generate $1 billion in player spending (27).
  • Genshin Impact is also the top-grossing Gacha mobile game for 2022 (30).
  • Gen Z, or people between the ages of 10 and 22 years old, have the highest share of the mobile gaming population (22).

Mobile Gaming Industry Revenue and Statistics

  • Mobile gaming revenue (smartphones and tablets) accounted for 51% revenue share of the entire video gaming revenue in 2022. Smartphone games alone earned $91.4 billion in revenue, followed by console games with $58.6 billion and boxed/downloaded PC games with $38.7 billion (1).
  • At the start of 2018, mobile gaming segment had the highest revenue share for global gaming revenue. In 2021, revenue share of the mobile game segment was at 59% (4).
  • Mobile gaming app revenue from both Apple App store and Google Play Store is expected to reach $103 billion by the end of 2022 (5).
  • F2P (Free To Play) mobile games generated $13.78 billion in 2021 in the USA alone (6).
  • Consumer spending on mobile gaming apps was the highest category for the first three quarters of 2021 amongst other mobile app categories (e.g. shopping, food and drinks, entertainment, etc.) (7).
  • Mobile gaming content market value in North America is projected to reach $29.1 billion by the end of 2022. In 2021, mobile gaming industry content market value was at $27.7 billion (8).
  • Revenue for the mobile game market is expected to reach a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 7.31% for the year 2022, with $59.34 billion market value (projected) by 2027 (11).
Female Gamer Playing On Phone Mobile Gaming Demographics

The growth of the mobile games industry over the last decade is unprecedented. Generating more than half of the revenue share for the entire industry is no ordinary feat, and it’s clear just how many people are invested into playing mobile games. Let’s not forget the fact that F2P (free to play) mobile games are earning higher revenues than both console and PC gaming combined. Game developers left and right are also quick to create hyper casual games that doesn’t take up a lot of your time and/or money.

Mobile Gaming Market Segment

  • The United States accounts for more than 25% of revenue share in the mobile game industry compared to other regions. This currently makes them the biggest mobile gaming market in the world. This trend started in 2019 and only amplified at the onset of the Pandemic (9).
  • Despite the USA having the biggest mobile gaming market, APAC or Asia Pacific has the highest number of mobile gamers with 1.29 billion as of 2021 (10).
  • Revenue for the mobile game market is expected to reach a CAGR (compound annual growth rate) of 7.31% for the year 2022, with $59.34 billion market value (projected) by 2027 (11).
  • China is expected to generate the highest revenue share for mobile gaming industry for 2022 with $47.20 billion (11).
  • Mobile gaming market revenue for Asia Pacific was $69 billion as of 2021 (12). It’s projected to reach $109.6 billion by 2026.

The Free To Play Business Model Was a Success

The mobile gaming industry could attribute its growth to the success of the Free To Play business model. A lot of the most successful mobile games right now are Free To Play, such as Garena Free Fire and Genshin Impact, but both were considered two of the highest grossing mobile games in 2021 (13). PUBG Mobile also reached $163 million dollars in in-app purchase as of April 2022 (14).

How Many Mobile Gamers Are There In The World?

  • As of 2021, there are 2.6 billion people who play games on their mobile phones(15).
  • Asia Pacific has the most number of mobile gamers with 1.2 billion, followed by Europe and Latin America with 551.7 million and 309.2 million respectively (15).
  • 21% of the mobile gamer population around the world spend an average of 1 to 7 hours per week on mobile gaming (16).

Mobile Gaming Demographics by Gender

  • As of January 2021, the distribution of mobile gamers in the United States is 55% female and 45% male (17).
  • In Southeast Asia, majority of mobile game distribution within all six countries are males. The Philippines has the largest share of male gamers with 71%, while Vietnam has the lowest at 51.2% (18).
  • In the UK, the distribution of female gamers is 51% for mobile games and 49% for male gamers as of June 2021 (19).
  • Korea’s mobile gaming population is 51.8% male and 48.2% female as of June 2021.

These numbers alone prove that the gaming industry, or the hobby of gaming in itself, is no longer dominated by male gamers. The share of gamers worldwide as of 2020 were equal for the following age groups (21):

  • 17% distribution for both male and female for gamers in the 21-35 age group
  • 15% distribution for both male and female for gamers in the 36-50 age group
  • 8% distribution for both male and female for gamers in the 51-65 age group
  • For the 11-20 age group, 11% are male gamers and 10% are female gamers

Unfortunately there are no published mobile gamer demographics on a global scale. The following data for mobile gaming industry statistics come from selected countries and/or regions.

Mobile Gaming Demographics by Age

  • 2020 data shows that Gen Z (age group 10-22) have the highest share of mobile gaming population at 79%, followed by Millenials (age group 23-38), and 68% are Gen X (age group 39-50) (22).
  • Between October 2020 and March 2021, mobile gamers aged 50 years and above spent an average of 21 minutes playing mobile games daily. In contrast, the youngest users aged between 20 and 24 years old spent the least time playing mobile games daily at 12.88 minutes (23)
  • 36.3 years old is the average age of mobile gamers (24)
  • More than 50% of parents in the USA have had kids make in-game microtransactions without their knowledge (26).
  • 8.2% of kids in the USA spend more than $100 on average for in-game purchases in mobile games (26).

In terms of spending habits, data from June 2020 shows four countries with new gamers or users spending more on average than existing users: United States, United Kingdom, South Korea, and Germany (25).

  • New gamers from Germany spent an average of $35.48 monthly
  • New gamers from the United States spent an average of $27.2 monthly
  • New gamers from South Korea spent an average of $20.58 monthly
  • New gamers from United Kingdom spent an average of $16.52 monthly

Most Played Mobile Games

Genshin Impact Mobile Gaming Demographics

For this part we will cover different statistics that determine how popular a mobile game is within the industry.

  • Data from March 2021 shows Genshin Impact only took 6 months before they reached $1 billion in player spending worldwide, making them the fastest mobile gaming app to reach $1 billion. They’re followed by Pokemon Go and Lineage M with 9 and 10 months respectively (27).
  • In the USA, Candy Crush Saga has the highest share of in-game or in app purchases in the United States with 11%, followed by Call of Duty: Mobile (28).
  • For the Gacha mobile gaming segment, the top grossing mobile game is Genshin Impact, generating $567 million during Q1 of 2022, followed by Lineage W and Uma Musume Pretty Derby with $272 million and $236 million respectively.

Monetization for Mobile Gaming is Constantly Improving

The mobile games market in North America was estimated at $27.7 billion. The F2P Mobile games market generated $13.2 billion in revenues for the first half of 2022 (8). The F2P’s business model focused heavily on low entry barrier with enhanced in-game features and unlockable content available for purchase. People play mobile games for free may still be motivated to further their gaming experience by purchasing these DLCs, in-game currency, or other features. To prove this statement, the average mobile gamer in the USA spent $61.2 every year on mobile games in 2021. Majority (38%) of the mobile gaming population in North America spent $30 to $99 annually (29).

(1) https://www.statista.com/statistics/292751/mobile-gaming-revenue-worldwide-device/

(2) https://www.statista.com/statistics/455655/digital-game-revenue-category-digital-market-outlook-usa/

(3) https://www.statista.com/statistics/455601/digital-game-users-category-digital-market-outlook-usa/

(4) https://www.statista.com/statistics/260167/mobile-gaming-share-of-total-gaming-revenue-worldwide/

(5) https://www.statista.com/statistics/511639/global-mobile-game-app-revenue/

(6) https://www.statista.com/statistics/240993/share-of-f2p-mmo-spending-by-region/

(7) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1272175/quarterly-us-app-consumer-spending-by-category/

(8) https://www.statista.com/statistics/292507/mobile-contents-market-value-north-america/

(9) https://www.statista.com/statistics/256673/global-mobile-game-revenue-by-region/

(10) https://www.statista.com/statistics/512112/number-mobile-gamers-world-by-region/

(11) https://www.statista.com/outlook/dmo/digital-media/video-games/mobile-games/united-states

(12) https://www.statista.com/forecasts/1301032/mobile-gaming-revenue-asia

(13) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1179913/highest-grossing-mobile-games/

(14) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1079038/pubg-mobile-spending/

(15) https://www.statista.com/statistics/512112/number-mobile-gamers-world-by-region/

(16) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1319411/mobile-gaming-time-week-country/

(17) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1243409/us-mobile-gaming-users-gender/

(18) https://www.statista.com/forecasts/1303534/southeast-asia-number-of-mobile-gamers-segment-revenue-by-country-and-gender

(19) https://www.statista.com/statistics/269126/mobile-gamers-in-the-uk-by-age-and-gender/

(20) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1077362/south-korea-mobile-gamer-distribution-by-gender/

(21) https://www.statista.com/statistics/272327/mobile-social-and-traditional-gaming-users-by-gender/

(22) https://www.statista.com/statistics/748089/number-mobile-gamers-world-platform/

(23) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1272891/worldwide-game-apps-time-spent-daily-age/

(24) https://techcrunch.com/2019/08/22/mobile-gaming-mints-money/

(25) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1220107/new-and-existing-mobile-gamer-monthly-spend/

(26) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1107246/kids-in-app-purchases-spending/

(27) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1227011/fastest-mobile-games-reach-1-billion-player-spending-worldwide/

(28) https://www.statista.com/statistics/202866/in-game-purchases-mobile-game-titles-usa/

(29) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1200153/amount-spent-video-games-spending-spenders/

(30) https://www.statista.com/statistics/1308503/gacha-game-mobile-gross/

James Stephenson

james stephenson profile picJames is a gaming and tech enthusiast. He has been playing computer games since the Commodore 64 days in the 80s. He has worked as a Broadcast Engineer with BBC News and knows a thing or two about building, fixing, and playing with PCs.