New Telegraph

Nigeria’s mobile game revenue to hit N63bn in 2023

In 2023, the app-based mobile gaming market in Nigeria is estimated to be worth approximately $126 million. But globally, the revenue from mobile games is expected to reach $164.10 billion before the end of 2022. In Nigeria, the revenue in the mobile games segment is projected to reach $30.91 million in 2022 as it is expected to show an annual growth rate (CAGR 2022-2027) of 8.14 per cent, resulting in a projected market volume of $45.72 million by 2027. In the mobile games segment, the number of users is expected to amount to 104.9 miliion users by 2027. User penetration is projected to be 33.4 per cent in 2022 and hit 42.8 per cent by 2027. In global comparison, most revenue will be generated in China ($47,220.00 million in 2022). According to estimates from Statista Digital Market Outlook, the average revenue per user (ARPU) in the mobile games segment is projected to amount to $0.43 in 2022, while in the year 2021 a share of 45.7 per cent of users was in the high income group.

The number of mobile gamers increases in proportion with the internet users penetrations. As of January 2022, Nigeria had over 109 million internet users — the highest number reported all over Africa. Egypt ranked second with over 75 million users. The majority of web traffic in leading digital markets in Africa originated from mobile devices — in Nigeria, one of the countries with the largest number of internet users worldwide, 82 per cent of web traffic was generated via smartphones and roughly 16 per cent via PC devices.

This is due in part to the fact that mobile connections are much cheaper and do not require the infrastructure that is needed for traditional desktop PCs with fixed-line internet connections. Mobile gaming has taken over the lives of millions with on-the-go entertainment and a wide range of genres where something can be found for every type of player. In 2021, mobile was the top-grossing gaming segment, ahead of console and PC. While there were 1.7 billion mobile gamers worldwide in 2021, this number is set to surpass 2.2 billion in 2025.

With a growing audience, mobile gaming market revenues are also bound to see growth, with figures expected to increase from $109 billion to $160.6 billion over the same period. While in China many of the top gaming companies are mobile-first, Japan’s biggest mobile gaming names include legacy publishers Bandai Namco, Square Enix, Capcom, and Konami.

These long-established console and online gaming companies have also started to successfully publish mobile gaming content – in fiscal 2021, Capcom’s mobile gaming sales amounted to 6.5 billion yen, up from 4.4 billion yen in 2020. DeNa, LINE Corporation, Aniplex Inc., CyGames, and GungHo Entertainment regularly compete for the title as top-grossing mobile gaming publisher in Japan.

South Korea boasts an internationally renowned online gaming scene, and its mobile gaming market is growing fast. In 2020, leading video game publisher NCsoft generated approximately 1.68 trillion South Korean won in mobile game sales, up from 979 billion South Korean won in 2019. This represents a 72 per cent year-over-year growth. Mobile games accounted for over two-thirds of the company’s total sales. NCsoft’s biggest Korean competitor Netmarble generated approximately 2.49 trillion South Korean won in operating revenues in 2020. Netmarble’s most prominent mobile games include Lineage 2 Revolution, Fate/Grand Order, and Ni no Kuni: Cross World. Other top mobile game publishers from South Korea include Kakao Games, Mobirix, and Com2uS. Overall, video games have become the most lucrative media segment concerning revenue over the last few years. 2022 will see the market grow to over $196 billion, according to Newzoo estimates, with $104 billion generated with mobile gaming alone. In comparison, revenues from the music and film industries reached $25.9 billion and $21.3 billion in 2021, while video streaming providers like Netflix and Disney+ generated an estimated $62 billion in 2020. The value of the video game market worldwide has increased significantly over the past decade and is forecast to grow even further in the upcoming years, surpassing the $200 billion mark in 2023. The greatest share of this games market revenue is generated by mobile games, while console games make up almost a third of the revenue generated worldwide.

The largest players on the video gaming market include companies such as Activision Blizzard, Electronic Arts, and Ubisoft, to name just a few. At the top of the list of public companies by gaming revenue in 2019 was Chinese conglomerate Tencent, which generated revenue of over $5.2 billion through video gaming in the fourth quarter of 2019. When it comes to video game consoles, a three-way battle is currently being fought out between Sony, Microsoft, and Nintendo. Since its release in 2013, Sony’s PlayStation 4 has achieved cumulative worldwide sales of over 112 million units, while lifetime unit sales of Microsoft’s Xbox One, released in the same year as Sony’s console, are hovering around 50 million. Despite being late to the party and only being released in March 2017, Nintendo’s latest offering, the Nintendo Switch, has been a roaring success across the globe, with worldwide unit sales of the console exceeding 63 million. Gaming is a hobby enjoyed by people of all ages and background, despite being a time-consuming one.

During a 2020 survey assessing the average weekly time spent playing video games worldwide, almost 15 per cent of respondents claimed to spend seven to 12 hours a week playing video games, while 7.4 per cent confessed to devoting more than 20 hours a week to the hobby. Men are still the slightly more dominant gender among gamers, and while there was a time when the proportion of female gamers had seen an increase, it seems that men are reclaiming their majority as gamers. It is estimated that the global gaming market will amount to $268.8 billion annually in 2025, up from $178 billion in 2021. In the video games segment, the number of users is expected to amount to 2,829.8 million users by 2027. User penetration will be 32.3 per cent in 2022 and is expected to hit 35.6 per cent by 2027.

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