The Landmark Moments in Mobile Gaming History - Warped Factor - Words in the Key of Geek.

Home Top Ad

Post Top Ad

The Landmark Moments in Mobile Gaming History

In 2020 there were a reported 2.4 billion mobile gamers on the planet, with 209 million in the USA and a staggering 620 million in China.

In total, last year just over $63 billion was raised in revenues from mobile gaming, but how did we get to this point? How did something that seemed so alien 15 years ago become so mainstream and globally important?

Read on to find out as we discuss the landmark moments in mobile gaming history that transformed it from a niche subset of gaming into a global powerhouse.

2007: The Beginning
“So, three things: a widescreen iPod with touch controls. A revolutionary mobile phone, and a breakthrough internet communications device. An iPod, a phone and an internet communicator.

“An iPod. A Phone – are you getting it? These are not three separate devices. This is one device! And we are calling it an iPhone.”
Steve Jobs, 2007

Fourteen years ago the head of Apple Steve Jobs uttered those famous words to a crowd of staff and media representatives at the Moscone Center in San Francisco. On that day, Jobs and Apple completely changed the mobile phone market and inadvertently, kick-started the mobile gaming industry.

Prior to 2007, attempts at so-called ‘smart’ devices had been made by a number of mobile phone giants, but none had really captured the imagination of the public.

Smart devices were either too clunky, too slow or way too complicated for the everyday public. The release of the iPhone changed all of this and brought smart devices into the mainstream.

Within a couple of years of the release of iPhone, it had become the norm to own an iPhone that could connect you with your friends, navigate you to work and store your favourite albums and podcasts.

Over the next two years, tentative steps were taken toward developing games for iPhone’s that could blow old favourites like Snake and Tetris out of the water.

2009: Angry Birds & Freemium Gaming

Between 2007 and 2009 a number of mobile games were released on iPhone, all of which were either free to download or available to buy with a one-off, and usually small fee.

In 2009 however, the App Store introduced an option for users to make in-game purchases on their favourite games.

The first title to truly harness this capability was Angry Birds, the insanely addictive, cartoon chaos game by Rovio Entertainment.

After the game soared to the top of the App Store charts, developers realised that there was serious cash to be made from their product. When Rovio released Angry Birds on Android late in 2009 they offered customers a free version which featured ads and a premium version without.

Within months of implementing this model, Rovio began to report monthly revenues of $40 million plus.

After experiencing success with the premium version of the game, the developers took the move to include in-game purchases that allowed users to buy more eggs to fire at the helpless in-game pigs. Revenues soared, and the ‘freemium’ model of mobile gaming began to be picked up by more and more developers.

Within 2 years of Angry Birds release, mobile gaming was a multi-billion dollar industry attracting tens of millions of new users every year.

(A brief look at how Angry Birds has changed and evolved over the years.)

2011: Gambling Incorporation
In early 2011 Apple made the bold move to allow real-money gambling apps to be featured on the App Store with Android quick to follow.

Within six months of this decision being made there were well over 100 online casino apps on both the App Store and the Google Play Store.

The main winner from this move to mobile were online slots games, which were almost tailor-made to be played on mobile. With their flashing lights and interactive icons, these brilliant little games have built up a huge fanbase, with games based on hit movies, some of the world’s most famous music artists and even historical events. Slots are renowned for paying out on a regular basis so make sure you read this detailed guide on how to win at slots to give yourself the best possible chance of success.

Between 2011 and now, gambling has really gained a foothold in the mobile market with mobile apps now being one of their most profitable revenue streams. Research by the British-based Gambling Commission in 2019 highlighted that 44% of gamblers reported to gambling mainly on their mobile device than at land-based venues or on PC.

Gambling companies around the world are reporting higher revenues than ever before and most of that is down to the mobile gambling’s popularity.

2018: AAA Mobile Gaming
Between 2007 and 2017 the majority of mobile games on the market were fairly basic and not particularly catered towards seasoned console or PC gamers.

Infinity Blade, which was released in 2010 was perhaps the first attempt at bringing an AAA title to the mobile platform. However, it wasn’t until 2018 that AAA mobile adoption became properly mainstream.

Fortnite, the insanely popular free to play Battle Royale PC & console game moved onto mobile in 2018, revolutionising mobile gaming in the process.

The mobile version was an instant hit with fans of the franchise and critics, who lauded the mobile game for its graphics and gameplay. It was also a big moment for development companies as Fortnite mobile’s success highlighted the possibilities of developing AAA mobile titles.

At one point in July 2018, Fortnite mobile was estimated to be bringing in daily revenues of $1.2 million. The financial opportunities represented by mobile gaming have convinced a number of AAA development companies to think seriously about adapting their usual PC & console titles for mobile.

At the time of writing, the mobile gaming industry stands on the precipice of great things with a number of industry experts predicting that mobile devices will replace consoles as the de facto gaming platform of choice in the years to come.

(Fortnite was the first AAA gaming title to encounter real success on mobile devices.)

In Summary
The past 14 years have seen a huge shift in the way that we enjoy games and most of that has been powered by the emergence of mobile gaming. In addition to revolutionising how we play, mobile gaming has also changed who plays.

There are now more female gamers and older gamers than ever before, who access their favourite titles through their pocket devices.

Beyond that, mobile gaming was behind the creation of Freemium gaming, which has had big repercussions for PC & console titles. The next few years are likely to see yet more innovations in mobile gaming, which judging by the progression of the past 14 years can only be good news for gamers.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Post Top Ad