India is clearly the next untapped market for games. I’ve heard a lot of interesting figures lately, but the market is dominated in the mobile space by Android at around 73 percent of the addressable market. I’ve also heard that India is also more accustomed to subscription based games and micro-transactions are something they are getting more comfortable with, so expect micro-transaction models to grow. Other interesting data includes:
The market for Digital Games in India is $853.9 Million in 2015
Mobile is 49 percent of the market, or around $416 Million today
Mobile is growing at a 64 percent growth rate year-over-year
By 2015, the mobile market for games in India is expected to be around $832 Million
There are approximately 185 Million mobile gamers in India in 2015
ARPPU in India for mobile games in October 2015 was $13.07 with a 1.53 percent conversion rate from player to payer
Digital console is 2.7% of the market today
MMO games are 28 percent of the market, with Free-to-Play MMO games comprising 21 percent of the total market
According to the new “Mobile Gaming Social Motivations” study on U.S. mobile gamers:
U.S. mobile gamers are typically playing more than two games per month, and spending an average of $4.58 each per month
Males spend $5.68 per month on average
Women spend $3.49 per month on average
Super Whales, or those that spend over $50 per month on games, spend on average about $108 per month
This group only constitutes 1% of the sample size, but Super Whales contribute nearly 29% to the mobile gaming revenue
Male U.S. mobile gamers spend almost twice as much on games monthly than female mobile gamers
Whales drive the bulk of revenues – 10% of players considered “High Spenders” (spending over $10 per month) make up 66 percent of the revenue from mobile gaming
Those playing 10 hours per week spent over 3X the average spender in primarily strategy, combat, RPG, action and casino games
Mobile gamers who play primarily on iOS devices tend to spend more than their Android counterparts; however, the greatest spending and game downloading comes from mobile gamers who play on both platforms
I was looking for some data on Cost Per Install (CPI) for games in Japan and a friend of mine who runs a large studio there sent me this link, a blog post by InMobi that I missed in January. It basically sets out the relative cost of mobile installs worldwide. While it isn’t exclusive to games, we can use it to decipher regional costs. To get started, I went over to one of my favorite CPI sites, MobPartner, to check out their scrolling list of live CPI transactions. If you like to watch CPI bidding, it’s the best place to watch the action. Here are a couple pics to illustrate the CPIs today:
As you can see, Empire: Four Kingdoms is buying a lot of installs and they are ranging in the U.S. between $1.90 and $2.40 and hitting $3.05 in the U.K. I would guess the higher priced acquisition in the U.S. is on a better performing network, or more proven ad channel that provides players that either convert a bit higher, or have a higher Lifetime Value (LTV). You need to balance cost with volume in any acquisition campaign, but that’s probably obvious.
So now let’s dig into the InMobi data. We know that their numbers are not just games, so we need to create a reference point.
The 174 is a number from InMobi on the relative cost per install in the U.K. related to the U.S. Since we know what Goodgame Studios is paying for their users we know the numbers in bold to be true. The InMobi numbers don’t quite match up yet. The difference is 160.5 instead of 174, which is roughly 92.2 percent of the difference. I broke down the numbers with the Relative CPI (R CPI), the Adjusted Relative CPI (AR CPI) and came up with the Actual Game CPI (AG CPI) below. It looks about right to me in terms of acquisition costs. I hope it’s helpful for you too.
A lot of people ask me how I keep up on so many markets and so many apps around the world. The short inspirational answer is I read a lot because I’m genuinely interested in emerging markets, new gameplay systems and culturally influenced IP from around the world. If you love what you do, you want to do as much of it as possible. So I figured I would start giving out some of the helpful resources that I read regularly to keep up on all things. Maybe it will inspire some people to become sherpas on the game industry as well.
Since this is the first post of this kind and I’m planning on giving away the farm, here are two great sites that are not referenced enough, and should actually cost money to visit for the info they provide:
Number of Android Apps – Appbrain – http://www.appbrain.com/stats/ (as of this date, 1,132,053 Apps in the Android marketplace). Also check out this link to see the average price of paid apps and ratings of apps by category. It’s a phenomenal source of info.
Number of iOS Games – 148Apps.biz –http://148apps.biz/app-store-metrics/ (as of this date, 194,512 active games in the market and 2,236 so far this month). Jeff Scott is a great source of info on the mobile games market. I’m pretty surprised he isn’t leading R&D at Zynga making a Meg yet. Where else could you find out that the average cost of a game on iOS right now is $0.75.
Here’s a great presentation from Xyo app search on App discovery and App Store optimization. It has a lot of information such as the importance of the App name, icon, keywords and the optimal copy to get an App higher up in the rankings. Anyone launching a iOS, Android, or Windows Mobile app should check this out.
According to Kantar Worldpanel ComTech: iOS was the top selling smartphone platform in the U.S, for the 12 week period ending November 25th, 2012. iPhone 5 helped push the number past 50 percent, the first time iOS has hit that level.
In an article on GamesBeat, information was given as to how GREE values mobile installs when determining what to spend on user acquisition.
*In Japan, GREE’s mobile install Lifetime Value (LTV) is around $15
*In the U.S.A., a mobile install is valued between $2-$5
*GREE says they have a 50 percent organic install rate and they tune the amount they are willing to spend on an install accordingly.
*The average install they are paying is in the $2 range according to the article.