The World Has Reopened but the Gaming Industry Doesn’t Care, Report Shows

The last two years were horrible for some industries, and the best ever for others. The companies offering in-home entertainment services have thrived during the months of the world being on lockdown: streaming services saw their subscriber base explode, deliveries were all the rage, and more people enjoy playing Texas Holdem on their computers or their phones than ever before. Many voices have cautioned these industries against being overconfident due to these fantastic results, saying that once the world reopens, things will return to the previous normal.

Well, the world has reopened, and we’ve seen some declines in some areas – but not when it comes to gaming, according to the latest report published by video game industry expert Newzoo.

Record-breaking revenues

According to Newzoo’s estimates, the growth of the gaming industry’s revenues will not stop after the recent significant growth – on the contrary, it will grow by at least 5% this year, compared to 2021. When it comes to total spending, the United States will, again, take the lead, followed closely by China, the second-largest gaming market in the world. But the fastest-growing areas are not these developed markets but the emerging ones: the growth of spending on video games shows double-digit growth in Latin America, the Middle East, and Africa.

Let’s talk numbers

According to Newzoo’s projections, the gaming industry will generate revenues worth 203.1 billion US dollars this year, 5.4% more than in 2021. Console games will see the largest growth – almost 9% compared to 2021 – to around $58 billion, followed by smartphone games at 5.7%, to $91.4 billion.

This year, mobile games will pass an important threshold: the revenues they generate will, for the first time, exceed $100 billion in a year (that’s smartphone and tablet games combined). Also, for the first time, mobile games will have generated more than half of the entire gaming industry’s revenue in a year, pushing smartphones and tablets into the top spot above PCs, and consoles alike.

At the same time, we are witnessing the end of an era: the death of browser games. Online poker, online casinos, and similar games are still mostly browser-based on desktop computers (they have mostly transitioned to native apps on mobile devices), but when it comes to other games, their market share is disappearing fast. This year, browser game revenues will decrease by almost 17%, to around 1% of the entire global gaming market, and will continue to decrease further in the coming years.

What to expect for the future?

While browser games might completely disappear in the coming years, the other platforms will continue to go strong. But they may not be as delimited as they are today. A growing number of franchises that usually choose a PC or Console-first approach will release more of their major titles on mobile, perhaps on mobile-first. At the same time, subscription services like Amazon Gaming, Xbox GamePass, and others will gain more market share – for those of you who don’t know them, these are pay-and-play services that offer access to a specific game library for a monthly fee, usually cheaper than buying a new triple-a game every month.