Games Now Top Money-Maker on Tablets and Smartphones; Gamers Spent An Average Of $62 On In-Game Virtual Goods In 2011

New Study from Magid and PlayFirst Shows Tablets and Gaming Are Made For Each Other; Tablet Emerging as Premium Gaming Platform

PlayFirst, a leading creator of mobile fun for family and friends, and Frank N. Magid Associates, Inc., a leading media and entertainment research firm, today announced "Tablet and Smartphone Gaming Trends", results from the annual study entitled "Magid Media Futures(TM): Mobile 2012".

The study illustrates the dramatic impact the tablet has had on the gaming market as games are now the top monetizable content category found on the tablet and playing games is now the number two most popular tablet activity surpassed only by accessing the Internet. Games are also the most monetizable content category on smartphones. iOS gamers on tablet and smartphones are more likely to play games, purchase games and buy in-game virtual goods than those gamers on Android devices.

According to the study, the average tablet gamer downloaded 20+ games last year. Twenty-three percent (23%) of tablet gamers are paying for virtual goods with an average spend of $62. Smartphones also continue to be strong gaming platforms with the average smartphone gamer downloading 10+ games. Fourteen percent (14%) of smartphone gamers are paying for in-game virtual goods, averaging $25 per spender.

Overall, game downloads on smartphones increased by 30% from 2010 to 2011, with free-to-play downloads increasing significantly. Looking ahead, 48% of respondents expect to play tablet games in the next 12 months, and half of non-current gamers on smartphones plan to or are considering playing games on their phones in the next 12 months.

"The tablet has become TV Jr. in the home," commented Mike Vorhaus, president of Magid Advisors. "Games are clearly at the center of the entertainment ecosystem on the tablet."

"This study reaffirms what we've seen in our own business as demand for both tablet and smartphone games continues to be strong and growing," said Marco DeMiroz, chief executive of PlayFirst. "Consumers love the free-to-play model as it gives them an opportunity to explore and play more games. Tablets are a natural home for these games especially as we see more beautiful displays and innovative features reaching the market."

More About the Study

This research was conducted by Frank N. Magid Associates, Magid Media Futures practice, and sponsored by PlayFirst. The study is a nationally representative online survey of 2540 people between the ages of 8 and 64, with a sample matched to the US Census. The study is designed to evaluate attitudes and behaviors of media and entertainment consumers. Data was collected from March 19 through March 26, 2012. For more information and selected results please go here.