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Online gaming market now worth $196 billion

Online gaming started out in the early 1990s, and grew up with the Internet. In less than 30 years, the global market for online gaming has reached $196 billion, according to a study by visualcapitalist.com, a market that is bigger than that of movie boxoffice ($43 billion) and recorded music ($19 billion) — that includes esports which is only one segment of the total.

Mobile is the largest gaming platform, with 2.4 billion gamers, the study shows, producing $68.5 billion in revenue in 2019—45 per cent of the total market that also includes PC and tablet gaming. The Mobile Games market will see a Calculated Annual Growth Rate of +10.8 per cent between 2018 – 2022.

What will this mean to the end user? There will be more premium gaming titles on mobile phones, and more immersive, interactive and competitive gaming content, according to a report by NewZoo.

It’s easy to think that mobile gaming in 5G is overhyped, but it will be a big step from 4G: “5G will reinvent digital media, by enabling us to step into a high-resolution 3D world, where we will experience a new sense of wonder. 5G breathes life into extended reality (XR) technologies, such as virtual reality and augmented reality. As we use these technologies, information, objects and people will be all around us, instead of just in front of us, creating an intense emotional engagement,” says Nokia — admittedly, not an unbiased observer.

On the hardware front, leading mobile brands like Samsung, Huawei, Xiaomi, Vivo, and OPPO have already launched their first 5G handsets and are set to introduce a full lineup of 5G devices this year. Apple is also rumored to launch a 5G iPhone later in 2020. NewZoo forecasts that there will be 2 billion 5G-capable phones on the market by 2022.

Trends like virtual reality, cloud gaming and real-time personalisation will drive adoption.

With industry leaders such as Oculus and Valve announcing cheaper headset options, blurring the lines between fantasy and reality is becoming more accessible for mass markets, and the pace could pick up further in 2020, the study says.

Cloud gaming takes advantage of faster, more reliable Internet connections, by giving gamers the ability to stream games rather than playing on a console.

In the future, games could automatically generate game content that is customised to fit each player’s personality and playstyle, based on their player data, according to the report.

As these technologies develop, they alter the way users experience games, and provide new opportunities for brands and advertisers to tap into enhanced viewer engagement.

All of this provides a wealth of new opportunities for tech companies in a variety of different areas. Oculus, for example, has suffered from slow takeup. Online gaming on smart phones could change all that.

“To consumers, 5G must also provide a compelling use case. Gaming often acts as a first adopter to new technologies across the entertainment business, and we believe gaming will also be the major touchpoint between consumers and 5G on the mobile platform. 5G will likely deliver gaming a platform-agnostic future and mobile will be an important access point for ‘platform-agnostic’ gaming services, such as cloud gaming. In fact, cloud gaming could be the “killer app” of 5G,” the NewZoo report concludes.

 

 

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