Mobile gaming, whether it’s about social games or downloadable fun games, is destined to shape how individuals will consume their gaming entertainment fix. And one only needs to look at the status of smartphone penetration in the world today. According to experts, more than half of the world’s population now owns smartphones, and it is expected that this number will still grow in the next few years. According to Statista, the number of individuals who will own smartphones will grow from 2.1 billion (2016) to roughly 2.5 billion in 2019, and it is expected that the smartphone penetration will also increase as well.
It is expected that by 2018, roughly 38 percent of the whole population owns at least one smartphone. And when one takes a look at the country with the biggest smartphone penetration, China gets the lead, with nearly 600 million users (2016). This figure alone helps power the growth of mobile gaming. As long as there is a high penetration of smartphone usage and internet connectivity improved along the way, mobile gaming is here to stay. But there’s more to mobile gaming than the increasing number of smartphone users or the improvement of internet connectivity in many parts of the world. Mobile gaming is expected to grow in popularity and reach in the next few years, and there will be trends that will support and sustain this growth. Here are some trends that will help boost mobile gaming in the next few years.
1. Entry Of Top Mobile Gaming Brands
While there are a number of positive developments in the mobile gaming industry, it still lacks the vigor and excitement of the former glorious years. One reason for this is the absence of strong brands and players that can command attention. Although there are top app gaming makers like King and Supercell, these brands are not in in the same league with Mario of the 80s. but this trend will soon change, thanks to the growing popularity of social media platforms, which help boost the stock of mobile gaming.
2. Social Features And Multiplayer Capability
Online and mobile games are traditionally played alone, at the comforts of one’s home and free time. But thanks to the changing dynamics in mobile gaming, it is expected that the new generation of mobile games will come with social features and even a multi-player capability. Today, there is a new generation of mobile games that allow the players to share the fun and entertainment with other players. Introducing a social aspect of the games is but a natural result and effect of the popularity of social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. The kids today or the ‘millennials’ as they are called by the media are accustomed to using these social media platforms. And since they are used to using these platforms, then they have expectations that the new breed of mobile games will also feature a social component. Game makers and developers are now quick to tap on this emerging trend, and they are now looking at games that involve a social aspect. Just take for example Sim City game, a strategy-based game that has learned to transform itself to meet the current demands and trends. Today, the Sim City Build It for Android and iOS now comes with a chat feature and a tournament system, allowing its players to compete with one another.
3. Virtual Reality And Augmented Reality
These are the two new technologies that are expected to shape the mobile gaming industry in the next few years. The concept of AR hits its peak when Pokemon Go was introduced to smartphone players. In this game, players get a chance to play the game while exploring the environment. Virtual Reality, on the other hand, experienced a boost when Oculus Rift and other VR devices hit major stores. Although these VR devices can help push mobile gaming to the next level, only a few managed to enjoy these technologies because of its steep price. The release of Pokemon Go is just the start of the use of AR in the mobile gaming industry. It has been reported that Google and Apple are now developing its own ARCore and ARkit which can pave the way for the introduction of a number of AR apps that can change the way mobile games are played and enjoyed.
4. Offline Games Still Draw Attention
The most popular mobile games that are available today require continuous internet connectivity. Plays and networking with other players for many games require the use of the internet, and any progress or developments associated with the games are lost as soon as the connection has been interrupted. While this has been the trend in mobile gaming, there’s still a traditional segment that draws attention-offline games. Today, you can count on a number of offline games that can compete directly with internet-enabled games. One of the most popular offline games was Fruit Ninja, which was a sensation until 2015 when it managed to earn at millions. Other mobile games that are carving their niches in the mobile gaming industry are Alto’s Adventure, Asphalt 8 and Badland.There is no denying the fact that the future of gaming is on mobile. With smartphone penetration shooting up to record levels and new technologies being introduced, it is expected that mobile gaming will continue its march towards general public acceptance.