Mobile Gaming Industry – Generating Big Business From Small Devices

In the year 2007, Apple Inc. gave a whole new meaning to mobile technology by launching its flagship device – the first-generation iPhone. The device acted as a boon for a mobile game development sector, which was otherwise growing with a “snail’s speed“. Later, in the year 2008, the Internet giant Google also released “Android OS” and this eventually started a war of apps, and both became fierce competitors. However, this proved fruitful for the smartphone users, as the competition resulted in the development of better mobile gaming apps with excellent graphics, fascinating game play and superb sound systems.

The Statistics and Predictions

With the pace of time, companies brought advance tools and technologies to develop more sophisticated gaming apps, to allure a bigger chunk of mobile enthusiastic population. As per recent statistics, in the year 2010, the smartphone and tablet gaming app sales reached $898 million, and it is expected to generate a revenue figure of $1.6 billion by the year 2015.

The overwhelming response experienced by the mobile gaming apps can be seen by the following facts –

  • 53% of smartphone owners play mobile games on daily basis
  • Smartphone users spend 14.7 hrs per month, playing mobile games
  • 93% people pay for gaming apps
  • 100 million mobile gamers in U.S. alone
  • 700 million download of Angry Birds app
  • Tiny tower generated $3 million from in-app purchase
  • Major revenue generation is via advertisements

It is worth mentioning that the above figures show only a small insight of the entire mobile gaming industry. However, with the technology evolving with each passing day, the popularity of mobile games is expected to break all the previous records.

Freemium Model or Paid Model – The Game Changers

The task of selecting the right medium for revenue generation has always been a game changer. There are three main revenue models in the mobile application development industry:

  • Free Apps – The apps were supported with advertisements, to support revenue generation.
  • Freemium (Free + Premium) Apps – Free to download apps, but with in-app purchase options.
  • Paid Apps – One-time payment for all the features.

No doubt, the freemium model has proven fruitful many times, but the major revenue generation is still carried by paid game apps. In addition, the predictions by experts state that, the revenue from free, ad-supported games is expected to grow by 12.3%, by the year 2014. Therefore, with free applications missing the “Spark“, and freemium apps showing better potential, the prospects of being innovative and effective are higher in the latter. As a result, one can sense a balance in revenue generation between paid and freemium apps in coming years.

Word of Mouth – The Main Reason Of Downloads

No matter whatever the medium is, physical or virtual, the “word of mouth” always serves as an efficient way of promotion. Even as the companies are spending heavy to promote their gaming apps, the statistics suggest that “word of mouth” medium of publicity still holds the number-one position in effectiveness. As per a recent survey:

  • Around 50% of adults learn about new gaming apps from friends and family.
  • About 40% of adults learn from app stores, after reading the user reviews and hot list.
  • About 25% of adults learn from social media sites.

However, there is also a long list of mobile gaming websites with a heavy influx of web traffic, present over the Internet that provides game reviews, upcoming apps, cheats and tips. So, companies should concentrate on utilizing all types of efficient media channels to acquire maximum coverage and ensure 100% promotion of their apps.

With mobile gaming apps available for free to play, it is easy to fall-in and get absorbed in them. Furthermore, from above statistics one can easily sense the increasing popularity, the higher growth rate and the potential in Mobile Game Development Industry.

Do’s and Don’ts of Mobile Game Development for Mobile App Developers

Evolution of smart phone devices like iPhone, Android, BlackBerry etc. has changed the way of people thinking about mobile games before. Developing the same for iOS, android or blackberry devices could be quite an attention seeking process, specifically if you have just entered into mobile game development. Many experienced mobile application developers, even though having years of experience in developing variety of mobile apps, fails to develop successful games due to forgetting some of the important gaming aspects.

Developing a game for mobile has become vital part of mobile application development industry due to its immensely growing popularity. If you are taking baby steps into mobile gaming and wish to start with bang, then do keep in mind below mentioned do’s and don’ts for mobile game development.

• Do keep in mind the limitations of mobile devices! Many novice mobile developers often forget the practical limitations of mobile devices while developing game for mobile devices, which leads to failure of the same at the end.

• Don’t copy some already popular games! Many developers often copy already successful games to make their first game development process less complex, as it won’t help you get attention from target audience. Don’t just blindly copy, but take idea from it or take it to next level with your imagination.

• Do keep in mind screen resolution of mobile devices! It is very crucial to design game by keeping in mind type of devices available in market. Android comes in variety of handsets with different resolution, whereas iPhone has different screen size. So, decide the device first to develop successful game.

• Don’t forget the importance of appropriate marketing and promotion! The success of your game is heavily depended on the way you project your creation through marketing and promotion. Plan and workout on marketing strategies from the beginning will help you get success of your mobile.

• Do keep in mind who is your target audience and what they expect from your game! Decide your target audience first, whether you wish to design creation for toddlers or kids or for youth, and try to know what actually they expect and want. Try to conduct some research and feedback for the same.

• Don’t forget the importance of sound! Sound is key element of mobile game, so do pay lot more attention while incorporating sound within the same. It should be appropriate and suitable to the type of game you have developed.

• Do try to release your game with free version to get instant catch by target audience.

• Don’t overlook UI and character design of your creation.

• Do get familiar with different game engines and SDK’s of different platforms.

So, above we see some of the effective do’s and don’ts of mob game development that every mobile developer should keep in mind while developing game for variety of mobile devices.

Copyright © 2012

Mobile Games Development: Its Latest Trends and Future Prospects

Mobile games and its development is now not a restricted territory. With the help of open source platforms, game developers are bringing in fantastic and interesting ones. Though the iPhone games rule the roost in terms of sheer classiness and operability, the Android and Symbian counterparts are not too far behind. One of the earliest games was the “Snake” which was launched in 1997. With the advent of sleeker platforms and consistent enhancements, the processing capabilities of today’s average mobile phone are much better than the processing capabilities of the costliest phone launched a decade back.

Nowadays, smart phones include a wide range of games which can be played easily by any age group. Android is one of the most popular operating systems and platforms today. It has a Java based environment and most of the apps are developed using Java. Even amateur tech lovers can tweak their applications easily by referring to relevant gaming sites. Each and every mobile application platform has a software development kit which does have all the necessary ingredients needed to make a fantastic interactive app or a game. One can start on with Android app development using the Android SDK (software development kit).

Development of 3D apps and mobile games is very much in demand today, much like the demand for Xbox games and PlayStation games. Most analysts agree that in the near future, an average user would be able to have much more interactivity and fun within the mobile itself. Though the 3D gaming experience is at a nascent stage, do not be surprised if 3D games get found in most smart phones in the near future.

Some of the trends related to gaming include:

Java is the most popular gaming platform which is ruling the roost today. But with subsequent competition with other platforms, the trends might change rather drastically.

Multiplayer apps like chess and poker are preferred by the online audience, especially those who frequent on social media. The common gaming platform allows people of a group to compete with absolute strangers too.

Mobile games are also used in many promotional and advertising campaigns wherein the user can play games and even shop from their favorite merchandise.

The emergence of portals which are selling games is on the rise too. The games are quite affordable to the average user and the demand makes it a win-win situation for the buyer and the developer. Different mobile games based on different genres like action, adventure, racing, puzzles etc. are available online.