Esports, and the increase in mobile device usage globally, will be the primary drivers for growth in the digital games industry over the next 5 years. A rise in mobile device usage will make gaming more accessible to all, while the mechanics of mobile games revenue models will make it easier for mobile gamers to participate in esports. Mobile gaming revenue already surpasses PC and console gaming revenue, and the development of mobile gaming markets in Greater Southeast Asia and South America (and the continued growth of these markets in North America, Europe, South Korea, Japan, and China) will further tip this balance. Mobile esports is poised to become a cornerstone of the global digital games industry over the next 5 years.

The report explores the evolution of mobile esports, compared to PC esports, globally, with a focus on Asian markets because Asia is the heart of global esports usage and operations.

Key takeaways from the report include:

  • Mobile esports tournaments will engage consumers not only as spectators but as participants. This will create mass market participation and engagement, growing a larger audience and generating new opportunities for revenue as esports transitions from fewer large tournaments to large numbers of smaller tournaments that are open to anyone who wants to compete.
  • Mobile esports will precipitate a shift from a limited number of high-profile, spectator-focused esports productions toward a much larger number of open tournaments carried out regionally and locally.
  • In 2018, mobile esports games generated $15.3 billion (25% of total mobile game revenue) with $5.6 billion from China alone, and another $450 million from Greater Southeast Asia. PC esports titles earned $16.1 billion in revenue globally, with about 40% of the earnings coming from China. 
  • There are already more gamers on the mobile platform than on PC & console combined. There are around 2.53 billion mobile gamers in the world in 2019, compared to the estimated 1 billion PC gamers and 500 million console gamers.
  • Mobile games have lower barriers to entry and higher install rates in comparison to PC and console games. This allows for better economics and higher dollar-to-player value in producing tournaments.

      The 45 page report with 21 data exhibits is available for free download here.