Why are big video game titles launching on phone?
April 25th, 2022, Rishad Dsouza

Why are big video game titles launching on phone?

There seems to be a rush among big gaming franchises to strengthen their presence in the mobile gaming space. Riot Games is set to bring VALORANT to mobile, Electronic Arts is testing Apex Legends on mobile in Mexico and Rainbow Six is also looking at a mobile gaming launch.

We dig into YouGov Profiles data to understand why expanding into mobile territory is a tempting proposition for video game franchises.

Behind these moves, is the undeniable popularity of smartphones as gaming devices. It is the most used gaming device among adults in the US and Britain, the two markets we look at in this piece.

A quarter of adults in the US (27%) and a fifth in Britain (19%) say they play games on their phone once or more per month, beating out other gaming platforms in their respective markets by a long way.

While a large share of those who play games on smartphones are casual gamers, who might not be inclined towards heavier titles such as VALORANT or Apex Legends, a significant portion say they are mid-core gamers (video games are a top interest, but they don’t take them too seriously) or hardcore gamers (take video games seriously and/or play competitively). In both the US (31%) and Britain (29%), three in 10 smartphone gamers describe themselves as mid-core gamers or hardcore gamers.

By pulling data from YouGov BrandIndex, YouGov Profiles can also give us a peek into the appetite for various gaming titles among mobile gamers. About one in 25 smartphone gamers in the US say they would consider playing VALORANT, while the Consideration score for Apex Legends is 6% and almost a tenth would consider playing Rainbow Six.

One in 25 mobile gamers in Britain would consider playing Apex Legends (4%) and Rainbow Six (4%), while VALORANT is yet to create substantial demand (1%). It is plausible that these titles could gain a further uplift in Consideration as and when their respective release dates approach.

It is worth noting that smartphones are the most popular gaming devices globally too. A third of consumers globally say that either they or someone in their household use smartphones for gaming (33%). This slice of data is from the newly launched YouGov Global Profiles tool, which offers insight into hundreds of consistent data points across 43 markets.

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Methodology: YouGov Profiles is based on continuously collected data and rolling surveys, rather than from a single limited questionnaire. Profiles data is nationally representative and weighted by age, gender, education, region, and race. Learn more about Profiles.