The Mobile Games Industry’s Revenues to Reach $195 Billion by 2030


The gaming industry has witnessed a remarkable transformation in recent years, with mobile gaming emerging as a dominant force.

According to a report by GlobalData titled “Mobile Gaming – Thematic Intelligence,” the mobile games industry generated a staggering $124 billion in revenue in 2023 and is projected to reach a whopping $195 billion by 2030.

Market Leaders

The Asia-Pacific (APAC) region leads the global mobile gaming market, generating 64% of total revenue in 2023. This dominance is driven by the region’s 5.2 billion mobile subscribers, accounting for more than half of the global total.

China is the top country in mobile gaming, contributing around 31% of global revenue followed by The US is a distant second with a 17% share.

Here are the Top 5:

  • China
  • US
  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • Germany

APAC’s lead is supported by rapid 5G adoption, with the region accounting for 75% of global 5G mobile subscriptions (1.8 billion) in 2023, mainly in China, South Korea, and Japan.

What are the Driving Forces Behind Mobile Gaming Growth?

Mobile gaming’s rapid growth can be attributed to several factors, including the widespread adoption of smartphones, improved hardware capabilities, and the convenience of gaming on the go.

The report suggests that most gamers will embrace mobile gaming in the next few years, driven by the following trends:

  • The Rise of Mobile Esports: Mobile esports has emerged as a significant contributor to the growth of mobile gaming. With the increasing competitiveness and popularity of mobile games, esports tournaments have gained traction, attracting a global audience and substantial prize pools. Big mobile esports such as PUBG Mobile, BGMI, Honor of Kings, COD Mobile, Mobile Legends Bang Bang, and Free Fire are now competing head-to-head with traditional esports like CS2, COD, DOTA2, Apex Legends, Fortnite, and League of Legends.
  • Cloud Gaming: Cloud gaming has the potential to revolutionize the mobile gaming experience by eliminating hardware limitations and providing seamless access to high-quality games across devices. Many industry veterans have already dubbed cloud gaming as the future of gaming. Big players like Xbox and PlayStation have begun working on technology to make high-end PC games easily playable on mobile devices. Another big player Netflix also makes a wave in this area with over 90+ games in its library including the GTA trilogy.
  • Hardware Advancements: Enabling Console-Quality Games on Mobile Mobile device manufacturers have been relentlessly pushing the boundaries of hardware capabilities, enabling mobile devices to run console-quality games. With the release of the iPhone 15, Apple has demonstrated its commitment to delivering a superior gaming experience on mobile devices.

Challenges and Risks

While the mobile gaming industry presents numerous growth opportunities, it is not without its challenges and risks. The report highlights the following concerns:

  • Government Regulations: A Disruptive Force Chinese regulations on in-app purchases, data privacy, child safety, antitrust, artificial intelligence (AI), and app store commissions have had a significant impact on mobile gaming companies operating in the region. One of the biggest markets for mobile gaming India also put similar rules on gaming companies which led to the banning of BGMI(PUBG) and Free Fire last year. European Union is also giving a hard time to game developers with new strict regulations in the name of privacy and monopolistic practice that almost led to the cancelation of Activision Blizzard- Microsoft merger.
  • Biggies Enter in Mobile Market: Take-Two, Activision Blizzard, and Netflix, among other tech titans, are realizing the potential of mobile gaming and are prioritizing the expansion of their mobile offerings. The main concern is how smaller gaming studios and developers can compete with industry giants and find their unique spots in the market.

Rupantar Guha, an analyst of the report, provides valuable context to the report’s findings:

“Mobile gaming revenue grew by 25% in 2020 from the previous year and by a further 10% in 2021. However, in 2022, annual growth dropped to just 3% as rising inflation hit consumer spending. The market showed signs of recovery in 2023, with revenue increasing by 6% compared to 2022.”

Despite the challenges posed by economic headwinds, the mobile gaming industry has demonstrated remarkable resilience and continues to thrive.

Note: The article contains the writer’s personal views in addition to factual reports.

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