Study finds that most mobile gaming is done at home

by: Sean M -
Pop Cap recently commissioned a study by Information Solutions Group to see how often people play mobile games in their day to day lives.

The study, which included some 125 million gamers worldwide, found that mobile gaming is not necessarily played on the go but largely while at home. This seems quite contradictory, as the term mobile gaming infers playing games while on the go, but that seems to not be the case. This especially true with tablet gamers, as they play more games at home than any other group. 

The gaming landscape may be changing, but does that mean that console and PC gaming will go extinct? I don't find that very likely, but time will tell how the gaming demographics will change.
Mobile Games Survey: Half of U.S. and U.K. Mobile Gamers Choose Mobile Devices as Primary Home Gaming Platform

PopCap Commissioned Survey Sees Mobile Games Played Everywhere; Most Popular Places to Play are on the Couch and in Bed

SEATTLE, WA — July 24, 2012 — Half of U.S. and U.K. mobile gamers favor mobile devices as their primary home game platform, according to a new survey released today by PopCap Games, a division of EA and maker of some of the world’s most popular video games.  Part of an extensive research project that projects a 125 million mobile gamer population in the U.S. and U.K, the survey reveals that mobile gaming doesn’t necessarily mean “gaming on the go,” with many mobile gamers stating that their favorite place to play mobile games is at home on the couch or while laying in bed.  The survey also uncovered many surprising, quirky and naughty mobile gamer habits.

Conducted by independent research firm Information Solutions Group, the survey analyzed the behavior and play habits of mobile gamers, defined as those who have played a mobile game in the past month.

“We already know that people play mobile games ‘on the go,’ but now we are seeing mobile gamers largely favor their mobile devices for home use.” said Dennis Ryan, VP of Worldwide Publishing at PopCap. “If you add the fact we are seeing a deluge of new gamers coming in through mobile, we believe mobile gaming is invading the last bastion of video game consoles and personal computers: the home.”

The full results of the survey can be found here:  http://www.infosolutionsgroup.com/2012_PopCap_Where_People_Play_Mobile_Games.pdf

Following are highlights from the findings:

Mobile is the new primary home gaming platform, especially for tablet owners

50% of the mobile gamers in the survey agreed that mobile gaming is their favored method of game play at home over traditional consoles, computers and handheld gaming devices. Tablet-only players preferred home play on mobile devices even more (57%).

Mobile gaming doesn’t have to mean “on the go”

According to the new survey, the top five places to play mobile games are: at home on the couch (69% of U.S. and U.K. gamers surveyed), at home laying in bed (57%), as a passenger in a car or on a bus or train (63%), waiting for an appointment (55%) and while watching television (41%). Those who play mobile games exclusively on tablets confirmed that they play more at home on the couch (78% percent) and while watching TV (52%) than other mobile gamers. Those who stated that they play mobile games only on a smartphone were more likely to play in situations that required waiting, such as while at a restaurant, in line at a store, or at an appointment.

Naughty gamers are playing mobile games everywhere; surprising facts

Many reported playing mobile games in offbeat places: A combined total of 10% confessed to playing mobile games either in a church or other place of worship, or while driving a car and/or while watching a movie at a theater. Of those surveyed, 8% confirmed they had played mobile games while in class at school and 9% had played at a sporting event. 6% of those surveyed had played mobile games at work during a meeting or a conference call, and 4% had played while at the gym. Almost one out of 10 mobile gamers (9%) reported that they had been late or missed an appointment, class, ride or flight because they were caught up playing a mobile game.

These distracted or naughty gamers and those who play in unorthodox places tend to be male (60%), younger than 35 years old (69%) and play frequently (78% play daily). This group also spends more money on mobile games (75% of this group spent money on games in the past year vs. 51% of the overall mobile gamer population) and are more likely to play mobile games with friends (85% play weekly, vs. 52% among overall mobile players). They plan to spend an average of $49.63 in 2012 on mobile games, game currency or content vs. $29.04 overall.

Survey Methodology

This international research was conducted by Information Solutions Group (ISG; www.infosolutionsgroup.com) exclusively for PopCap Games. The results are based on 2,301 online surveys completed by members of the world’s largest online ePanel (Toluna) in the United States and United Kingdom between April 25 and May 1, 2012.  To qualify for the survey, individuals had to own and use a mobile phone. Among these mobile phone owners, 1,004 were identified as mobile gamers (those who played a game on their mobile phone in the past month). In addition, 712 of the mobile device owners were also identified as smartphone owners, while 361 were identified as tablet owners. In theory, in 19 cases out of 20, the results will differ by no more than 2.3 percentage points from what would have been obtained by seeking out and polling all U.S. and U.K. mobile phone owners age 18 and over. Smaller subgroups reflect larger margins of sampling error. Other sources of error, such as variations in the order of questions or the wording within the questionnaire, may also contribute to different results.

About PopCap

PopCap Games is the leading global developer, publisher and operator of casual video games: fun, easy-to-learn, captivating games that appeal to all ages across PC, mobile, social and other platforms. Based in Seattle, Washington, PopCap was founded in 2000, was acquired by Electronic Arts in 2011, and has a worldwide staff of more than 600 people in Seattle, San Francisco, Vancouver, B.C., Dublin, Seoul, Shanghai and Tokyo. PopCap's games have been downloaded over 1.5 billion times by consumers worldwide, and its flagship franchise, Bejeweled®, has sold more than 50 million units.
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