A new Juniper Research report says a growing consumer acceptance of in-game purchases and a sharp rise in smartphone adoption will push sales of in-game products & services from $2.1 billion last year to $4.8 billion (£3.1 billion) in 2016. In addition, tablet-based gaming will increase; a third of mobile games revenues will come from tablet downloads by 2016.
The report says purchases will increase as users became accustomed to the ‘freemium’ model of a free game with chargeable additions. In addition, the number of game developers adopting the freemium model rather than the pay-per-download model is growing.
Charlotte Miller, who wrote the report, said “An increasing number of games developers are finding the in-game purchase model attractive simply because it provides easy answers. Their piracy rate will drop and the game will see more downloads. However, while some games may generate significant revenues from in-game items, the model doesn’t work with all games and developers have to tread a fine line between encouraging purchases and appearing to be exploitative.”
[Juniper Research whitepaper; report]