Mobile gaming industry is ascending at a very great pace, logically generating the revenue from smartphone users. According to a Counterpoint Research report, the Indian smartphone user base is growing at a 26% CAGR between 2013 and 2017, making India the second largest smartphone market with 220 million users after China. With an outstanding evolution of smartphone from just a tool for calling and messaging to a superlative machine carrying hell lot of utilities, the gaming market in India is deemed to grow to $3 billion by 2019. Yeah, you heard it right.
Now the technology is about Artifical Intelligence (AI), Virtual Reality (VR) and self-driven cars, and with the advancement of strong visual computing machines, the meaning of games had stepped to a new domain. Realising the heavy involvement of the gamers in the game, letting them make decisions while playing and predicting the outcome on the go basis, gaming companies are pushing gamers in a different new virtual world of fantasy, action, and strategy, for which gamers are also ready to empty their pockets.
During the recent Pocket Gamer Connects event, Reliance Games, in association with Zapak.com, launched a report titled “Unveiling the New Era of Gaming in India“. The report unveils some of the astounding statistics and highlights the flourishing gaming scenario in the country. According to the report, the Indian smartphone market is primarily being propelled by the youngsters under the age of 25 years, which comprises of 63% gamers. Now it is the opportunity for smartphone game developers to root their position in the mobile gaming industry as the craze for gaming is high and will move up through the air with a great deal of investments being pushed by investors in this ambience. But the real question is, are they really prepared for it? Just with the technical mentality of building a game one cannot even stand a chance to survive in the market. They need to put themselves into the mindset of consumers to understand WWW: What they want, What should be their designing approach and What guidelines to follow to initiate in-app purchases. These 3Ws are the most vital player in making a game success.
The report, encompassing over 5000 devices and over a million sessions worth of analysis, helps us to understand what truly moves and engages the gamers of India:
- Money is the major factor. How one can pull money from the pocket of gamers who are more confined towards free gaming. Generally, these gamers fall into the low-range or entry level Segment of smartphones pricing under INR 15,000 (US$230), But they dominate the Indian gaming industry as the total number of sessions are higher and engagement is also quite decent.
- The average Indian mobile gamer traditionally plays on a smart device comprising of 1GB RAM and an internal storage of 8Gb, which is expected to shift to 2GB RAM and 16GB internal storage in near future.
- The high-end devices owner are rewarded as the most engaging party in mobile gaming.
So, one need to keep their marketing strategy evenly to cater the needs of both the players of the house, while allowing gamers to visit advertisement or rewarding videos without paying to progress in the game. But once the game is too addictive for a gamer, he is ready to spend some of his earnings in ‘in-app’ purchases. Seriously, games are driving people mad. They are all set up to prove their might in the game, if not in the real world.
Tablets are no way near to smartphones in gaming utilisation. With data analysis across more than 5000 devices, 60% of sessions were recorded on smartphones compared to tablets in India. Smartphones are quite portable as compared to tablets. Rather who will risk his/her job while playing games on the tablet at office or college. It is quite impressive to know that females today are sharing 35% of the gamers dashboard on the Web and Mobile. With rising literacy rate of women in India and increase in the disposable income, the acquirement of smartphones is significant .
“Brace yourselves summer is coming“. No, I am not trying to take you into the Game of Thrones winters, rather I am trying to pull all your focus on upcoming summer holidays for children. This will bring more gaming engagements and sessions. 68% of the mobile gamers are college students and employed youths. Users in the age group of 18 to 34 account for about 59% of the overall sessions in a year. Amazing, isn’t it ?
The giant $500 million digital advertising market of India is to shift its focus to games as one can easily graph the target audiences usage pattern, payment history, and digital engagement. Gamers are ready to watch on advertisement if they are paid, in the sense that they are allowed to have extra benefits in the game while spending none from their pockets. The Game is On!
100 Million gamers with session times of 10 minutes plus and ability to show ads worth 2 minutes in a session is a dream come true to most of the advertisers. That’s half a billion minutes of advertising every day! Do the math!
It is not only limited to advertisements. Many great movies are inspired by the games stories and are put them onto the screen. The famous series of the Desktop and consoles gaming Prince of Persia: The Sands of Time was adapted on screen by director Mike Newell. And this trend is growing further with the upcoming release of upcoming movies Warcraft from director Duncan Jones and Assassin’s Creed from director Justin Kurzel.
“From about 40 gaming startups a year ago,there are more than 250 in operations today. The next generation of gaming startups in India need to focus on the opportunity, scale, learn by doing and drive forward”, believes some of the accelerators in the industry.
We all make choices, but at the end choices make us.