Mobile gaming


Travel Tech

Mobile gaming is growing and tablets are certainly on the rise and are now driving the growth. Tablet gaming revenues are expected to grow by nearly 400% between 2012 and 2016. Gaming is certainly an industry that is growing at a very fast pace and is considered by many as a huge growth area that even in times of financial struggle, still continues to grow. With mobile devices increasingly becoming popular amongst consumers worldwide, these consumers are also taking advantage of mobile gaming. Now, it is clear that consumers are moving from Smartphone gaming towards tablet gaming (eMarketer 2013).


When looking at the current development of mobile gaming revenues, it is interesting to see that tablets are gaining ground with regards to smartphones. Slowly, the gap between Smartphone and tablet gaming is closing. eMarketers data shows that in 2012, tablet gaming revenue achieved $2.1 billion whereas $7 billion in mobile gaming revenue was boasted by Smartphones. Although there is still a big gap between tablets and Smartphones, in 2013, the gap further closed to $3.7 billion in mobile gaming revenues by tablets and $8.5 billion by Smartphones. By 2016, tablet gaming revenue is estimated to increase to $10 billion with Smartphone gaming revenue increasing to $13.9 billion.


Smartphone gaming is still strong and even in 2016, smartphone gaming revenue still will be higher than tablet gaming revenue. However, the gap will shrink to a sole difference in revenue of 16% as tablet gaming revenue is expected to grow significantly up to 2016. The overall growth in mobile gaming revenue is incredible and demonstrates the importance of gaming especially with regards to consumers’ using their mobile devices for games at all times of the day. Through mobile, gaming has become easier for consumers and every day there are new gaming apps available to download. Due to the easy usability of mobile devices and consumers being able to play games that are easy, and the sheer variety in types of games available, gaming is certainly the future.


In tourism, gaming is one of the newly discussed and trending topics. Some destinations are already offering games to download and play on their websites. Porto’s Treasure hunt game and Thailand’s game area within their website are only 2 examples for destinations already offering games. The tourism industry also sees growing numbers of new start up businesses that offer gamified apps and games that can enhance the visitor experience when travelling to a destination. Although there are gamified apps already available for travellers, only limited research has been carried out monitoring and analysing the popularity of these apps amongst travellers visiting a destination. In the future, these gamified experiences can be considered as added value tools that destinations can offer to travellers. However, the decision to jump onto the gaming bandwagon should be made by thinking about a destination’s or tourism business’s overall strategy. The opportunities are there, but games should not be done just for the sake of offering a game.

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