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56+ Mobile Gaming Statistics (2022): Revenue, Market Share, Demographics

Last updated: 2 weeks ago
8 min read

The global mobile gaming industry earned $93.2 billion in 2021, which represents 52% of the total gaming industry that year.

The fact that more and more people are spending their free time in front of their smartphones shows in mobile gaming statistics. Find out:

  • Which mobile games and genres are the most popular, most profitable, and most downloaded
  • How many people play mobile games, and how many of them are female gamers
  • What trick do mobile game publishers use to monetize their mobile games

Did you know “geolocation AR” is the least profitable mobile game genre? Find out which one earns the most in the article below.

Mobile game PUBG Mobile

Mobile gaming revenue

Mobile game market share

Statistics about mobile games

Mobile gamers & demographics

Most downloaded mobile games

Top-grossing mobile games

Mobile games & demographics

Mobile game monetization

Important Mobile Gaming Statistics

  • The global mobile revenue reached $93.2 billion in 2021, and it’s expected to earn $103.5 billion by the end of 2022.
  • RPG (role-play games) is the most profitable mobile gaming genre, earning $21.9 billion in 2020 and $18.3 billion in 2019.
  • China had a 35% of the global mobile market revenue in 2020, with the USA having 20%.
  • There were 773,674 mobile gaming apps on App Store and Google Play, with the latter having almost twice as much gaming apps.
  • Subway Surfers leads the pack with 191 million downloads in 2021, while PUBG Mobile leads in revenue, earning $2.8 billion in 2021.
  • There were 2.6 billion mobile gamers worldwide in 2021, with half of them coming from Asia.
  • 75% of mobile gamers in the US are females, and 65% of those aged 10-65 play on Android.
  • The hypercasual game genre makes 94.09% of its revenue from ads, whereas RPG makes 80.94% of its earnings from in-game purchases.

Mobile gaming revenue

The global mobile gaming market earned around $93.2 billion in 2021.

That represents 52% of total global gaming revenue that year.

Global mobile gaming market revenue

(Newzoo)

According to Data.ai, that percentage will increase to 61% in 2022.

(Games Industry)

YearGlobal mobile
gaming revenue
2022
(estimation)
$103.5 billion
2021$93.2 billion
2020$77.2 billion
2019$68.5 billion
2018$70.3 billion
2017$50.4 billion
(Newzoo 2, Newzoo 3, Newzoo 4, Newzoo 5, Newzoo 6)

Mobile gamers spent $116 billion worldwide in 2021.

Roblox, Coin Master, and Genshin Impact were among the highest-grossing mobile games.

(Games Industry 2)

Revenues from different video game segments in 2022:

Video game
segment
Revenue
in 2022
Smartphone games$91.4 billion
Console games$58.6 billion
Boxed or downloaded
PC games
$38.7 billion
Tablet games$12.1 billion
Browser PC games$2.3 billion
(Statista)

The free-to-play mobile gaming market reached a revenue of $13.78 billion in 2021.

The revenue is estimated to reach $14.94 billion in 2023.

YearF2P mobile gaming
market revenue
2023
(estimated)
$14.94 billion
2022
(estimated)
$13.2 billion
2021$13.78 billion
(Statista 12, Statista 13)

Growth of mobile gaming

The mobile gaming industry is growing by an average of 16.28% per year.

YearGlobal mobile
gaming growth
2022
(estimation)
+11%
2021+20.7%
2020+12.7%
2019-2.5%
2018+39.5%
2017/
(Newzoo, Newzoo 2, Newzoo 3, Newzoo 4, Newzoo 5)

Mobile game genres by revenue

RPG game genre creates the most money worldwide, bringing $21.9 billion in 2020.

The second genre is strategy games, with $15.1 billion in revenue in 2020.

Mobile game genresRevenue
for 2020
Revenue
for 2019
RPG21.9 billion18.3 billion
Strategy15.1 billion11.7 billion
Puzzle8.5 billion7 billion
Casino7.2 billion4.9 billion
Shooter5.7 billion3.8 billion
Simulation4.1 billion2.7 billion
Lifestyle3 billion2.2 billion
Sports2.9 billion2.1 billion
Action2.2 billion1.7 billion
Geolocation AR1.9 billion1.3 billion
(Statista 2)

US mobile gamers spent 14.8% more on arcade games in H1 2022 compared to H1 2021.

The second was the “tabletop” genre, with a mere 0.9% increase in revenue.

Otherwise, every other game genre saw a decline in revenue.

Game genreGrowth from
H1 2021 to H1 2022
Growth from
H1 2020 to H1 2021
Hypercasual-2.2%+41.3%
Lifestyle-4.8%+2.6%
Puzzle-8.8%+14.8%
Strategy-9.2%+23.4%
RPG-10.4%+6.6%
Action-10.5%+68.9%
Casino-10.9%+3.5%
Sports-11.7%+1.7%
Simulation-14.9%+10.7%
Shooter-24.5%+16.7%
Geolocation AR-26%-5.8%
Racing-28.8%-3.8%
(Statista 3)

Mobile game market share

With a $3.03 trillion market cap, Apple is the highest-grossing mobile gaming company.

Highest-grossing mobile gaming companies

Apple stepped into the mobile gaming business in March 2019 when it launched Apple Arcade, a mobile game subscription service. Granted, Apple is predominantly a hardware and software company, and most of its revenue comes from non-gaming sources.

CompanyMarket cap
Apple3.03 trillion
Microsoft2.28 trillion
Alphabet1.84 trillion
NVIDIA627.7 billion
Tencent
Holdings
591.3 billion
Qualcomm201.3 billion
Intel198.7 billion
Electronic
Arts
38.0 billion
Roblox37.3 billion
Take-Two
Interactive
19.5 billion
(INN)

Artifex Mundi was the highest-earning mobile gaming publisher on Android in June 2022, grossing $31.8 million.

Mobile gaming
publisher
Earnings
in June 2022
Artifex Mundi31.8 million
King$28.86 million
Moon Active$27 million
Blizzard
Entertainment
$26.54 million
Big Fish
Games
$23.13 million
Playrix$22.23 million
Netmarble$21.72 million
Square Enix$19.12 million
Zynga$14.99 million
Bandai Namco
Entertainment
$14.95 million
(Statista 4)

iPhone’s highest-grossing mobile gaming publisher in June 2022 was Tencent Mobile Games, with $77.8 million in revenue.

Another Chinese publisher, NetEase Mobile Games, made it to the second spot, earning $56.26 million.

Mobile game
publisher
Revenue made from iPhone’s
gaming apps in June 2022
Tencent Mobile Games$77.8 million
NetEase Mobile Games$56.26 million
(Statista 5)

Mobile game market country share

China generated 35% of the global mobile gaming revenue in 2020.

Share of mobile gaming revenue in 2020, by country

Another huge gaming market, the USA, generated 20% of the revenue (even though there are only 207.7 million of American players compared to 2.6 billion worldwide).

Interestingly, the top 5 countries have contributed to 75% of all mobile gaming revenue.

CountryShare of global
mobile gaming
revenue in 2020
China35%
US20%
Japan11%
South Korea5%
UK4%
Rest of
the world
25%
(eMarketer)

Android game market share

Mobile games for Android brought in $81.5 billion in revenue in 2021.

That’s 28.1% more compared to 2020.

YearAndroid mobile
games revenue
Growth
2021$81.5 billion+28.1%
2020$63.6 billion+15.8%
2019$54.9 billion-2.6%
2018$56.4 billion+44.2%
2017$39.1 billion/
(Newzoo, Newzoo 2, Newzoo 3, Newzoo 4, Newzoo 5)

How much do mobile games make?

The average earning for a mobile game with around 36,000 downloads is $549,630.

These are calculations from the BSG website, which represent the ideal average but don’t reflect real numbers. Some games do much worse, and some do much better.

According to their more realistic calculations, a game with …

  • Less than 50,000 users
  • $1 per every 4th user

… can expect around $12,500 in revenue, which is a lot less.

(BSG)

Mobile Games Statistics

How many mobile games are there?

Google Play and App Store combined had 773,674 available mobile games in Q2 2022.

Gaming apps on Google Play & App Store

Google Play had 477,998 mobile games on Google Play, and App Store had 295,676.

Both stores can share the same game titles, so this isn’t the actual number of mobile games on the market.

Quarter of
the year
No. of games
on Google Play
No. of games
on App Store
Google Play
& App Store
together
Q1 2022477,998295,676773,674
Q4 2021670,447275,013945,460
Q4 2020427,056298,290725,346
Q4 2019343,292266,224609,516
Q4 2018288,848298,455587,303
Q4 2017647,488376,5361,024,024
Q4 2016515,268495,5581,010,826
Q4 2015380,233384,462764,695
(Statista 6, Statista 7)

Types of mobile games

There are numerous types and subgenres of mobile games, but the most popular ones are:

  • Action
  • Adventure
  • Arcade
  • Battle Royale
  • Casual
  • Card
  • Role-Playing 
  • MOBA – Multiplayer Online Battle Arena
  • Puzzle
  • Brain games
  • Pretend play
  • Education
  • Board
  • Racing
  • Casino
  • Strategy
  • Sports
  • Trivia
  • Word

(AppSamurai)

MMORPGs like World of Warcraft aren’t that popular on mobile.

Most downloaded mobile games

Subway Surfers was the most downloaded mobile game of 2021, generating 191 million downloads.

Interestingly, this game was released in May 2012 and is still topping the charts.

GameNo. of global
downloads in 2021
Subway Surfers191 million
Roblox182 million
Bridge Race169 million
Garena Free Fire154 million
Among Us152 million
Hair Challenge138 million
Join Clash136 million
8 Ball Pool130 million
Ludo King125 million
Candy Crush Saga119 million
(Forbes)

If you’re a mobile gamer, check the best earbuds for gaming.

Even in April 2022, Subway Surfers was still the most downloaded mobile game, with 26.6 million installs.

Globally, people installed 4.7 billion mobile games in April 2022 alone.

India was the country with the most downloads, generating 783 million installs. The US was the second, with 394.8 million installs.

Overall Downloads

  1. Subway Surfers (26.6 million downloads)
  2. Garena Free Fire (25.2 million downloads)
  3. Ludo King
  4. Roblox
  5. Fill The Fridge
  6. Candy Crush Saga
  7. Bridge Race
  8. Merge Master
  9. PUGB Mobile
  10. DOP 4

App Store Downloads

  1. Subway Surfers
  2. Good Pizza, Great Pizza
  3. Fill The Fridge
  4. PUBG Mobile
  5. Roblox
  6. Wordle
  7. Fishdom
  8. Honor of kings
  9. 8 Ball Pool
  10. Genshin Impact

Google Play Downloads

  1. Garena Free Fire
  2. Subway Surfers
  3. Ludo King
  4. Merge Master
  5. Roblox
  6. DOP 4
  7. Candy Crush Saga
  8. Bridge Race
  9. Race Master 3D
  10. My Talking Tom 2

(SensorTower)

App Store’s most popular category in Q2 2022 is gaming apps, with a 13.54% share.

Business apps are second, with a 10.22% share.

(Statista 15)

Top-grossing mobile games

The highest-grossing mobile games of 2021 were PUBG Mobile and Honor of Kings, each earning $2.8 billion worldwide.

GameRevenue
2021
Revenue
2020
Revenue
2019
PUBG
Mobile
$2.8 billion$2.6 billion$1.5 billion
Honor of
Kings
$2.8 billion$2.5 billion$1.5 billion
Genshin
Impact
$1.8 billion//
Roblox$1.3 billion$1.1 billion$508 million
Coin
Master
$1.3 billion$1.1 billion$539 million
Pokemon
GO!
$1.2 billion$1.2 billion$658 million
Candy
Crush Saga
$1.2 billion/$1.5 billion
Garena
Free Fire
$1.1 billion//
Monster
Strike
/$958 million/
(SensorTower 2)

Playrix and Playtica were the mobile game publisher whose games appeared on top charts the most times.

Six times, to be precise. Games from publishers King and Supercell appeared 4 times, whereas games from Lilith Games appeared 3 times.

Mobile game
publisher
Share of times their
mobile game appeared
on top charts
Playrix16.2%
Playtica16.2%
King10.8%
Supercell10.8%
Lilith Games8.1%
Activision
Publishing
5.4%
Niantic5.4%
Product Madness5.4%
SpinX Games
Limited
5.4%
Phantom EFX5.4%
(Apptica)

Top mobile games by monthly active users

PUBG Mobile had an average of 511.6 million monthly active users in April 2022.

That makes it the top mobile game in the number of monthly active mobile gamers.

GameNo. of monthly
active users
No. of daily
active users
PUBG Mobile511.6 million42.6 million
Among Us415.5 million/
Garena
Free Fire
311.2 million41.5 million
Candy Crush261 million13 million
Roblox210 million21 million
Minecraft PE173.5 million16 million
Clash of Clans105.7 million/
Pokemon GO!81.2 million8 million
Mobile Legends:
Bang Bang
80.6 million13 million
Call of Duty:
Mobile
57 million6.5 million
(XFire)

Mobile Gamers & Demographics

How many people play mobile games?

There were more than 2.6 billion mobile gamers in the world in 2021.

Number of mobile gamers per region

Most of them, 1.3 billion, come from Asia.

World regionNumber of
mobile gamers
Asia1.3 billion
Europe551.7 million
Latin
America
309.2 million
North
America
207.7 million
MENA145.8 million
Sub-Saharan
Africa
126.2 million
Oceania25.3 million
(Statista 8)

Percentage of players by gaming platform

At 57%, smartphones are overall the most popular gaming platform in the US.

46% of gamers play on a console, whereas 42% use PCs.

Gaming platformPercentage
of users
Smartphone57%
Console46%
PC42%
(Theesa)

Mobile game demographics

Around 49% of Android mobile gamers are females, according to Google Play stats.

Interestingly, 75% of American mobile gamers are females, according to eMarketer.

(Google, eMarketer 2)

64% of American gamers aged 35-44 play games on smartphones.

Age groupPercentage of those
who also play games
on a smartphone
Preferred
genre
18-34 years57%Casual (53%) &
Shooters (53%)
35-44 years64%Casual (66%)
45-54 years59%Casual (72%)
55-64 years52%Casual (75%)
65+ years34%Casual (81%)
(Theesa)

American mobile users aged 18-24 were the most committed mobile gamers in Q2 2020, with 62% of them playing once or several times per day.

Age
group
Play once or
several times
per DAY
Play once or
several times
per WEEK
Play once or
several times
per MONTH
18-2462%19%11%
25-3453%19%16%
35-4451%21%13%
45-5455%13%12%
55-6442%11%14%
65-7436%15%13%
75+26%14%9%
(Statista 9)

65% of 10-to-65-year-old women in the US play Android mobile games.

Around 43% of them play more than 5 times per week, compared to 38% of men.

  • 60% of women players say they feel good when playing mobile games.
  • 58% feel the same when playing a new game, compared to 70% of men.
  • On the other hand, 60% of female mobile gamers think that only 30% (or less) of mobile games are geared toward women.

(Google, Newzoo)

How long does an average mobile gamer play?

African players spend an average of 26 minutes playing casual mobile games.

That makes the most dedicated mobile players in the world.

GenreNorth
America
Latin
America
EuropeAfricaAsia-
Pacific
Hypercasual5.4 min5.8 min6.7 min6.6 min7.2 min
Casual15 min18.8 min23.7 min26 min21 min
Midcore15.4 min23.7 min18 min17.5 min16.4 min
Hardcore18.1 min26 min19.7 min13.8 min16.5 min
Social
Casino
11.4 min21 min19.9 min17.1 min21.4 min
(adjoe)

Females are more dedicated mobile gamers than males, averaging higher playtime in almost all genres.

Except in the hardcore genre, where males play an average of 17.4 minutes per day, compared to 15.4 minutes on the female side.

Game
genre
FemalesMales
Hypercasual6.4 min6.4 min
Casual22.8 min19 min
Midcore17.5 min15.1 min
Hardcore15.4 min17.4 min
Social
Casino
16.9 min16.2 min
(adjoe)

Interestingly, users aged 50+ spend the most time playing mobile games.

Their average is 7.7 minutes per day.

Game
genre
0-19
years
20-29
years
30-39
years
40-49
years
50+
years
Hypercasual4.9 min6.2 min6.2 min6.7 min7.7 min
Casual15.2 min20.3 min21.8 min22.5 min22.8 min
Midcore12.3 min14.8 min17.5 min18.1 min17.1 min
Hardcore15.9 min16.9 min17.5 min16.1 min14.1 min
Social Casino14.4 min13.9 min17.8 min18 min18.4 min
(adjoe)

Mobile Game Monetization

Mobile game monetization statistics

Mobile gaming apps earn money using these 6 methods:

  • Selling games for a price (paid games)
  • Games with a subscription model (battle or season passes) – the latter helped some games to significantly boost their revenue, for example:
GameIncrease
in revenue
Lords Mobile102%
Gardenscapes85.5%
Hay Day46%
Increase in mobile game revenue from battle/season passes. (Source: SensorTower 3)
  • Offering premium upgrades in otherwise free mobile games (freemium apps) – this includes an “ad removal” monetization mechanic, with 90% of users willing to pay to get rid of the ads (SensorTower 3).
  • In-game advertisement
  • In-game purchases (microtransactions)
  • Licencing and selling merch

(Starloop Studios)

The in-game advertisement market was worth $137.26 billion in 2020.

If the growth of mobile gaming popularity continues, it’s expected to rise up to $221.5 billion by 2027.

(Business Wire)

79% of mobile game developers say a mix of ads and microtransactions is the best way to monetize gaming apps.

Specifically, 53% think rewarded videos (ads that you have to watch in order to receive a reward) are the main drivers for in-game purchases.

(Facebook)

82% of mobile gaming app publishers say video ads are the most popular way to monetize gaming apps.

(Statista 10)

Around 33% of mobile game publishers that use ads and in-app purchases believe playable ads are their most successful format.

Playable ads allow users to play a game within an ad before downloading it.

(Facebook)

Hypercasual mobile games receive a whopping 94.09% of earnings from ad revenue and only 5.91% from in-game purchases.

On the other hand, role-playing (RPG) games get most of their revenue from in-game micro transactions (80.94%) compared to 19.06% from ads.

Game
genre
Ad revenueIn-game
purchases
Action23.4%76.6%
Adventure24.3%75.7%
Arcade67.1%32.9%
Board69.7%30.2%
Card46.5%53.5%
Casino23.8%76.2%
Casual36.7%63.3%
Hypercasual94.1%5.9%
Puzzle25.2%74.8%
Racing26.6%73.4%
Role-playing
(RPG)
19.1%80.9%
Stimulation34.7%65.3%
Sports56.4%43.6%
Strategy29.4%70.6%
Trivia59.6%40.5%
Word80.2%19.8%
(Statista 11)

The average amount that American mobile gamers spend on in-game purchases is $61 per year.

(Statista 14)

Around 31.1% (out of 2,005 respondents) of parents from the Sell Cell survey in 2020 allowed their kids to make in-game purchases.

40.3% of parents that allow, don’t let their kids spend more than $10 per month.

23% say their limit is $50 per month, whereas 8.2% let their kids spend even more than $100.

Monthly amount spent
on in-game purchases
Percentage of parents
that allow kids to spend
<$1040.3%
$10-$2014.1%
$20-$309.3%
$30-$405.1%
$40-$508.2%
$50-$10014.8%
$100+8.2%
(sellcell)
  • Nonetheless, 67.1% of parents were worried their kids are spending too much on in-game purchases.
  • Shockingly, 40.8% of kids made a purchase without parental knowledge, with an extra 9.5% of parents not being sure about the purchase.
  • Strangely, 60.6% of parents didn’t bother asking for a refund if their kid made an accidental purchase.

(sellcell)

Mobile game downloads from app referrals in App Store have increased by 12% from 2018 to 2020.

Here’s the table of what referrals result in most downloads:

YearDownloads
from browse
Downloads
from search
Downloads
from app
referrals
Downloads
from web
referrals
202026%44%26%2%
201924%42%31%2%
201824%35%38%3%
(SensorTower 3)

62% of the App Store’s revenue in 2021 came from game purchases.

(Games Industry 3)

Read more:

Conclusion

These were the most interesting mobile games stats. This industry can be very profitable if the game succeeds. The freemium app model can generate large sums of money, so it’s no surprise a lot of gaming app publishers want their piece of the market.

What is your view on mobile gaming? Do you think the metaverse will come to the mobile too?

Please let us know in the comments below.

Sources: Newzoo, Newzoo 2, Newzoo 3, Newzoo 4, Newzoo 5, Newzoo 6, Newzoo 7, Games Industry, Games Industry 2, Games Industry 3, Statista, Statista 2, Statista 3, Statista 4, Statista 5, Statista 6, Statista 7, Statista 8, Statista 9, Statista 10, Statista 11, Statista 12, Statista 13, Statista 14, Statista 15, INN, eMarketer, eMarketer 2, AppSamurai, Forbes, SensorTower, SensorTower 2, SensorTower 3, SensorTower 4, XFire, Theesa, Google, adjoe, Starloop Studios, Businesswire, Facebook, BSG, Apptica, sellcell

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