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Mobile gaming dwarfs PC and console gaming in South Africa

Mobile gaming SA.jpg

Last week we talked about what the future holds for SA gaming as per the latest PricewarerhouseCoopers (PWC) report and outlook for entertainment and media. According to the report, the single biggest shift in total video game revenue comes from mobile gaming, which comes close to toppling the combined revenue of PC and console gaming. 

Mobile gaming growth in South Africa reflects international pattern

Mobile game revenue in South Africa will reach R1.9 billion by the end of 2019, according to PWC. That number includes in-app purchases as well as money generated by in-game ads. While that is a huge figure, there is still plenty of room left to grow as the market for mobile games continues to flourish.

In 2014, mobile gaming managed to rake in R1.2 billion in revenue whilst PC and console gaming managed to attain a combined total of R1.3 billion (R529 million and R785 million respectively). The growth is largely attributed to South Africa's growth in smartphone ownership combined with the relative weakness of fixed broadband infrastructure in the country. In 2015, social/casual revenues will overtake traditional video game revenues. 

The South African trend of mobile growth is similar to that of the international market which, according to research specialist Newzoo, will also generate more revenue than console titles in 2015. The international trend of mobile game dominating revenue is causing some game developers to jump ship into the mobile market. 

Game development to shift focus towards mobile games

Many traditional game publishers have invested heavily in mobile games, or at least launched console games across mobile devices. 

Konami Games, who has a rich history in making console and hand-held titles, that stretches well back into the 80's, has decided to dedicate its future to mobile game development

Bethesda, a renowned game studio and creator of popular AAA titles, launched their first mobile game: Fallout Shelter earlier this year. Fallout Shelter managed to rocket to the top of the iOS charts; and earned Bethesda $5.1 million in just 14 days.  Bethesda marketing VP Pete Hines, when questioned on what investment Bethesda plans to make in the mobile gaming space, stated: 

"First and foremost, we're continuing to look more and more at doing things in the space that make sense on their own. Because we don't really control who in the mobile space is going to decide to play your game."

The shift from game development companies to focus on mobile development makes financial sense. There is a concern for console and PC gamers, however, as some of their favourite studios are beginning to jump ship into mobile gaming. The concern is that studios will begin to drop titles, regardless of where it stands, in order to pursue 'greener pastures' in mobile gaming.

What are your thoughts on the current dominance of mobile gaming in the market? Do you think it will cause more game studios to stop PC and console game development to focus on mobile? 

Let us know your thoughts by commenting below or hitting us up on Facebook or Twitter. 

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