PopCap Survey: Mobile Gaming Gains in Popularity
May 13, 2009

PopCap Survey: Mobile Gaming Gains in Popularity

Seattle, Wash. - PopCap Games, a developer and publisher of casual games, announced the results of a new survey that shows 57 percent of AT&T wireless customers who were polled play mobile games on their wireless devices. The survey, conducted by Information Solutions Group among more than 1100 AT&T wireless customers, underscores the growing popularity of mobile gaming, reveals an official.
Why are wireless consumers turning to mobile gaming? Mobile gaming serves as a distraction and a source of stress relief for on-the-go consumers.

• More than 50 percent of mobile gamers polled said they gamed as a distraction from daily life issues, while 40 percent said they gamed for relaxation and stress relief.

• Fifty percent of mobile gamers polled say they play mobile games during work hours, while one in seven mobile gamers say they most often play games on their phone during work when they need a short break.

Nearly 60 percent of mobile gamers in the survey indicated they play games on their wireless device at least once a month, and 40 percent said they played weekly or more often.

• 91 percent of mobile gaming sessions are 30 minutes or less; 62 percent are less than 15 minutes.

• Over three quarters (78 percent) of mobile gamers have been playing games on their phone for more than a year, and 55 percent of those say they’ve been playing for 3+ years.

• On average, nearly a quarter (22.2 percent) of mobile gamers’ total game playing time occurs on their mobile phones.

Mobile gaming is poised for growth in 2009. One-third of mobile gamers surveyed said they were “somewhat or very likely” to purchase a game for their cell phone in 2009.

• Just over a quarter (26 percent) said they’ve paid for a mobile game. (Across all mobile phone owners, including those who have never played a game on their phone, this equates to 15 percent having purchased a game.) More than three quarters (76 percent) of mobile gamers said they have played free games that came pre-installed on their phone, and a third (33 percent) indicated they have downloaded one or more free games to their phone.

• The top factors influencing participants’ decisions to buy a mobile game were “game is in a genre I like” (61 percent), “price of the game is reasonable” (52 percent) and “played demo version and liked it” (50 percent).

• Survey respondents who have purchased one or more mobile games have purchased an average of 7.2 mobile games; 26 percent said they’d purchased four or more games in the past year, with those newer to mobile gaming being more likely to purchase games for the phone.

• Among respondents who indicated they would not be buying a mobile game in 2009, the top three reasons for that decision were: “happy with free games” (24 percent), “none of the games interest me enough to buy” (15 percent), and “lack of time to play” (14 percent).

What games are played most? According to the survey:

• Tetris (20 percent) and Bejeweled (18 percent) were most frequently named as “games you enjoy playing on your cell phone,” with Solitaire a close third (17 percent).

• The most popular genres of mobile games are Puzzle (66 percent) and Card/Casino (51 percent), with Board games (15 percent) and Action/Adventure (11 percent) a distant third and fourth.

• When asked to name the most compelling characteristics that “motivate mobile game players to play the same game numerous times on their cell phone,” respondents cited “relaxing game play” (62 percent) and “addictiveness” (30 percent) as the top two influencers.

Mobile gamers in the survey are fairly evenly split by gender, with 51 percent of males and 49 percent of females saying they game.

• Men tend to play mobile games somewhat more frequently than women; 44 percent of male respondents said they play once a week or more often, compared to 35 percent of female respondents.

• But women play for longer stretches of time. Forty-one percent of women surveyed say their average mobile gaming session was 15 minutes or more, compared to 35 percent of men.