Apple Cuts A Larger Slice Of Mobile Gaming Pie

If iPhone and iPod Touch gaming is in the same category as the Nintendo DS and PlayStation Portable, then the Apple device surged in 2009 at the expense of the two dominant mobile platforms, especially the PSP.

That is the finding the analytics site Flurry, which found Apple's control of the DS-PSP-iPhone portable gaming marking, in the US, increased to 19 per cent in 2009 from 5 per cent in 2008, while the market shares of both the DS and the PSP shrank.

This market on the whole did grow, Flurry said, to $US2.55 billion from $US2.25 billion, so Nintendo's DS software revenues would have gone up by about $US100 million (from $US1.68 billion to $US1.78 billion). But for the PSP, revenues fell sharply, falling from $US450 million in 2008 to $US280 million in 2009. Flurry says it took the numbers from the NPD Group and its own estimates of iPhone/iPod Touch revenues.

Overall, Apple's mobile devices are figured to account for 5 per cent of all US video game software revenue. "Controlling 5 per cent revenue of a $US10 billion industry in just a year and a half is significant," Flurry wrote. "From a market share perspective, console games lost ground to portable platforms and iPhone. While the downturn in the economy may have dampened sales of the more expensive console games category, there is no denying that iPhone has generated substantial revenue and entered strongly into a mature industry."

Naturally, differences in distribution, development cost, length of game experience and device features invite argument as to whether Apple handhelds should be compared with Nintendo's and Sony's. But yes, if game software on a handheld is the definition of this market, then Apple certainly is a force in it.

Apple iPhone and iPod Touch Capture U.S. Video Game Market Share [Flurry via Games]


    Sony should take an object lesson from this: stop making games like GoW: Chains of Olympus, and start churning out crapware at $0.99 a pop. Preferably with the name "Imagine ****z" as the title. They'll get 100% market share!

      Everytime I see someone play one of those Iphone games, I just want to shake their hand and congratulate them for wasting their time and money on poopy games.

      They already came up with that idea, under the name "Minis".

    Sad thing is... the games are crap but at such a LOW price people are willing to buy them and give them a go... Its not like they loose much.

    I think this is more market growth then takeover - given the number of psps nds's and iphones that continue to sell. It's kind of good for gaming, because the quality of hand held titles might go up if large developers (not ubisoft) see mobile devices as more profitable platforms - the iphone might even be considered a gateway console into a handheld that isn't flooded with crap.

    iPhone users get use to the concept of playing games on the move, or on a portable, then all you need is a "killer app" on the PSP or DS

    I've had heaps of fun playing Space Miner, Flight Control, Real Racing, and Plants versus Zombies on my iPhone touch and the gameplay matches or beats anything the PSP or DS can produce.

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