According to a recent news report from Geekaphone, mobile gaming technologies such as iPhone Game Development are one of the fastest growing technology sectors in 2011. To prove this, all that is needed to do is simply to take a closer look at the industry’s numbers: revenue in the mobile entertainment industry is expected to be $8 billion in 2011. Come 2014, revenues are expected to exceed $11 billion. Furthermore these are the most popular paid apps in the Apple App Store and have accounted for 72% of all downloads of the most popular apps.
But it is not only revenues that come from iPhone games that are expected to rise in the coming few years. Android Game Development is also in full swing. However, these figures leave a lot of people asking themselves: where exactly is the money coming from? After all, 81% of all downloads are free games such as Angry Birds. There are other ways to monetize a game than having a user pay for it up front.
Consider this: very few mobile users would be willing to spend $40 on a mobile video game, even if this is what games for consoles or the PC would normally cost. One important source of revenue for gaming companies is advertising. They put ads in various places in the game, such as during the opening screen when the game is loading or between levels. When you have millions of players using a game daily, ad revenues will quickly begin to add up. There is also the concept of “freemium” games. These are free to download, but have some kind of in game currency or items that players can purchase with real money.
If you have ever played some games made by Zynga such as Treasure Isle, you will understand the concept. Players can use these for free and usually can progress through it without paying anything. There are two ways for them to earn certain in game items such as weapons, characters, etc: they can either do it the hard way by completing various tasks in the game, inviting friends to play the game and send them the item they need, etc. Or they could simply buy what they want, which makes it much quicker to advance in the game.
GA services companies are also cashing in with this new growth of mobile video games. In fact, one popular graphic design company that specializes in video game level design has reported that their revenues have jumped by 42% in the past year, mainly due to the acquisition of clients involved in Android game development.