The mobile gaming market is the fastest, and the largest growing market in the world as it has been suggested that over 50% of all gaming is done on modern smartphone devices, however much like what had been seen with the console market too many esports too, it had become difficult to develop any community that could realistically take part – but there may be an opportunity for change as more traditional markets have had periods of slowing or postponement with those who have been able to continue operating without delay or disruption have found a growing number of opportunities to appeal to newer audiences.
Mobile devices have been changing very quickly and the last few years have seen the introduction of more hardware that supports improvements in gaming such as more devices being equipped with screens with faster display rates, improve battery life and the eventual move toward increased performance – with this in mind certain titles have seen the development of what could become its own form of esports particularly in the Battle Royale genre as games such as Fortnite and Player Unknowns Battlegrounds. This growth could also be compounded by a recent increase in interest for esports and gaming as a whole as the pandemic period led to a cancellation in many traditional sporting events, leading many to turn to esports as an alternative for participation, viewership, and other hobbies that rely on these events taking part.
(Image from EGB.com)
This change in approach has also led to the growth of esports betting across multiple platforms too – whilst the big three games are still the most represented on sites for esports betting there are also changes being seen as more niche or smaller represented titles, particularly on mobile are also starting to find their way on to these sites too. It has also helped to bridge the gap between those who may not have usually understood the movement for esports and the widespread introduction of gaming, with mobile being the most accessible platform for many to take part it has allowed an audience that may not have access to a higher-end PC or console, or any understanding of that side of gaming to find and access titles without any specialist hardware or without requiring additional cost.
Whilst it’s almost certain that it could never grow to be a similar size to what is seen elsewhere, there is certainly an opportunity for a mobile esports market to start moving forward with this newer audience and to start evolving for these different demographics, it may also provide an opportunity for a new genre of gaming to start finding its way as these different demographics have distinct differences in interest for what they may play. Where the pandemic may have had a huge impact on certain industries and markets, particularly early on for the traditional sporting market, it has opened the doors for online gaming as a whole and the mobile space to start moving forward in a different direction.