Games accounted for almost 80-percent of all mobile app spending on the Google Play Store and iOS App Store in 2017, new data compiled by research firms App Annie and IDC suggests. Over the same period, games captured only 35-percent of global app downloads, suggesting they have been monetized much more effectively than other mobile software. While smartphones and tablets already overtook PC and gaming consoles in terms of gaming revenue back in 2015, their lead is still widening, with the new study indicating mobile spending now accounts for more than 50-percent of all global sales generated by games. App Annie and IDC estimate consumers are now spending 2.3 times more on mobile games than they do on funding their PC and Mac gaming habits, whereas the mobile game segment outperformed home consoles by a factor of 3.6 in 2017. Dedicated handheld platforms such as the PlayStation Vita and 3DS only account for a marginal portion of the global market in terms of revenue, the same study reveals.
While games accounted for proportionally more spending on the Google Play Store than the iOS App Store, the average owner of an Apple-made device spent almost two times more on games in 2017 than their Android-owning peer did, according to the new estimates which don't cite any specific monetary figures. The recent growth that allowed mobile games to increase their sales lead over other platforms has largely been fueled by the Asia-Pacific region, primarily South Korea for Android titles and China and Japan for iOS ones, as per the same source.
IDC and App Annie found Lineage 2: Revolution to be the top grossing Android game in 2017, followed by Lineage M, Monster Strike, Fate/Grand Order, and Candy Crush Saga, in that order. Player-versus-player games appeared to have gained significant traction over the course of the last year, with two out of the top five titles belonging to that category on both Android and iOS. Asia-Pacific is also leading the market in terms of monetary success, with only two titles created outside of the region managing to rank in the top five best grossing ones on Android, iOS, and handheld consoles in 2017 – Clash Royale (5th on iOS) and Candy Crush Saga (5th on Android). Refer to the gallery below for a visualization of IDC and App Annie's latest findings.