According to data released by Newzoo, the global games market will generate $180.3 billion in 2021, representing a 1.4% increase over last 2020. Mobile gaming market will account for 52% of the global gaming market with $93.2 billion, while console and PC will see slight declines mainly due to thinner release calendars.
PC gaming revenue has dropped by 0.8% and console gaming revenue by 6.6%, while mobile gaming has increased by 7.3%.
“We started the year thinking it would be impossible for the market to match 2020, as delays for AAA releases and ongoing supply shortages for new gaming hardware gave people little opportunity to spend,” says Tom Wijman, Newzoo’s Head of Reports & Forecasting. “Yet, nine months into 2021, we realized that the market would grow again. If anything, this shows that the games market is definitely no longer the seasonal, hit-driven business it once was. New gaming content no longer means new games or new hardware—a new season pass is just as likely to drive revenues.”
Newzoo also found that the audiences for games and gaming content have continued to grow, with 3 billion players driving the above revenues.
According to Sensor Tower, global consumer spending on mobile games is expected to reach $89.6 billion across the App Store and Google Play, up 12.6% year-over-year from $79.6 billion in 2020.
Looking ahead, the global gaming market is projected to hit $218 billion by 2024 whereas mobile games are expected to make $116.4 billion.
One of the most notable developments in gaming market operations in 2021 has been the multiple M&A deals, investments and IPOs, including Roblox, Applovin, Krafton and Unity. In March 2021, the EU officially approved Microsoft’s $7.5 billion Bethesda acquisition. Bytedance acquired Shanghai-based gaming studio Moonton at a $4 billion valuation.
Mobile publishers acquired ad-tech companies to offset privacy challenges resulting from Apple’s ATT, including Zynga’s Chartboost acquisition for $250 million.