EA generates $1 billion through its free-to-play mobile sports games

EA Sports has grossed more than $1 billion through its free-to-play mobile games to date, 49 per cent of which is generated from the Madden NFL series alone.

According to a report by Sensor Tower Store Intelligence, this $1 billion is only inclusive of EA’s self-published titles such as Madden NFL, FIFA Soccer, NBA Live, and EA Sports UFC franchises, and does not include profits from titles published by other companies elsewhere in the world, such as Tencent which publishes FIFA Soccer World in China.

While $490 million – 49 per cent – of this in-app revenue came from the Madden NFL franchise, EA Sports’ free-to-play FIFA titles account for approximately 36 per cent, which is around $360 million. NBA Live Mobile Basketball contributes less at about 14 per cent of all spending – around $140 million – while EA Sports UFC brings in just 2 per cent.

"Owing to the popularity of football and basketball in the region, mobile gamers in the U.S. have accounted for the majority of the $1 billion total at approximately 62 per cent, or more than $620 million," the report states. "The next-largest markets for EA Sports mobile revenue by spending have been Great Britain and Japan at 5.7 and 5.4 per cent of the total, respectively, with spending in those countries focused primarily on entries in the FIFA franchise."

It’s been a turbulent year for EA, owed in part to the controversies surrounding loot boxes in Star Wars Battlefront II, the recent reports of a cancelled open-world Star Wars game, and a "rocky" start to Anthem’s demo testing. In October 2018 Jade Raymond – who left Ubisoft to found EA’s Montreal studio, Motive, in 2015 – parted company with the developer publisher and Samantha Ryan was appointed in her place.

About Vikki Blake

It took 15 years of civil service monotony for Vikki to crack and switch to writing about games. She has since become an experienced reporter and critic working with a number of specialist and mainstream outlets in both the UK and beyond, including Eurogamer, GamesRadar+, IGN, MTV, and Variety.

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