Juniper Research predicts that ad spend on mobile games will increase ten-fold over the next five years, up from $87 million last year to $894 million (£577 million) by 2015.
The company says games such as Rovio's Angry Birds are making a significant impact by offering free versions of their games and funding them through in-game advertising. It also notes that games are being deployed as marketing tools by brands.
Daniel Ashdown, the report’s author, said “Angry Birds has been a huge hit over the last year on the iPhone since its launch; but arguably its relative impact, in terms of downloads, has been bigger on GetJar and, more recently, on Android Market, as a result of offering the game free with ads. Users get a great game for free, but advertisers get significant product/brand exposure; the same is true of mobile games as marketing tools.”