The Unstoppable Force of Mobile Gaming
Whether you’re an early adopter of smartphones and have had one for almost a decade or you’ve recently bought into the craze and you’re the proud owner of something new such as a Samsung Galaxy S7, you’ve probably played video games on your phone before. Whether you tried out the recent Pokemon Go update or you’re more into casual games such as Candy Crush, you’re officially a gamer if you have at least one gaming-related app installed on your phone.
However, not everyone includes mobile gamers into the same pool of players as console or PC gamers. This is typically because mobile gaming isn’t as big as the other dedicated gaming devices, but analysts have estimated that by 2019, the mobile gaming market will be worth around $52.5 billion, and mobile gaming will take up roughly 34% of the entire industry. If that’s not enough to be taken seriously, then nothing will convince console and PC gamers that mobile gaming is a serious thing.
Powerful and Convenient
Convenient gaming in the past was dominated by handheld consoles such as the Game Boy. It allowed people to play video games no matter where they were. The selection of games was, of course, fairly different from the console games of that era, but it was something that was previously not possible. This made gaming portable, and handhelds eventually grew more powerful and more versatile.
However, as machines dedicated to gaming, they couldn’t add too many additional features because it would eat into production costs and make the devices more expensive. Companies like Sony and Nintendo wanted their devices to be cheap enough to get into the hands of as many consumers as possible, and most people already had smartphone devices so they didn’t need another handheld that could play music or access 3G and 4G internet.
More Than Just Gaming
Smartphones games don’t have as many regulations as portable game consoles, meaning developers can make everything from gambling apps such as William Hill mobile to simple puzzle games such as Two Dots that would never make it onto a premium handheld console. This opens up the opportunity for more creativity, meaning we get unique games such as Pokemon Go which made a ridiculous amount of money in its first couple of weeks.
However, as phone technology slowly continued to advance and grow even more powerful than handheld consoles, people started to realise that they no longer needed handhelds in order to get their gaming fix. With fully-featured 3D graphics, decent battery life, and the ability to use their devices as regular phones for communication, consumers started to ditch their handheld consoles in favour of powerful smartphones. Since they were also used for more purposes than just gaming, it warranted their more expensive price tag. With games costing less than a cup of coffee or even being completely free, the mobile market dominated with its ease of access and low barrier of entry.
Can anything stop mobile gaming? Not likely. In terms of handheld gaming, there will always be a place for devices such as the 3DS and the newly released Nintendo Switch. However, with smartphones becoming more accessible and more powerful, there’s no sign of the mobile gaming market ever slowing down for at least the next couple of years.