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Just 1% of mobile game publishers generated 93% of all spending in Q3 2019

A new report into the mobile gaming market has discovered 82 per cent of the 29.6 billion new app downloads in Q3 2019 new installs are generated by just 1 per cent of app publishers. This means 99 per cent of games publishers share just 20 per cent of the market, with 6 billion downloads combined.

The report – authored by mobile gaming analysts Sensor Tower Intelligence – also determined the top 1 per cent of games generated 93 per cent of all spending, and 95% of mobile game revenue.

“There were more than 3.4 million apps available globally across the App Store and Google Play in 2018, an increase of 65 per cent from the 2.2 million apps available in 2014,” the report said. “However, the percentage of apps that have been downloaded at least 1,000 times has decreased over the same period, from 30 per cent in 2014 to 26 per cent in 2018. In other words, in a continually growing market where most publishers are competing against the publishers controlling 80 per cent of all new user acquisition, standing out among the competition is more crucial than ever.”

Sensor Tower Intelligence

Sensor Tower asserts there were approximately 792,000 publishers globally across both the App Store and Google Play in 2019’s third quarter, but the top 7,920 – which is just 1 per cent – generated 23.6 billion unique installs, or 80 per cent of both stores’ combined total of 29.6 billion downloads. 

“When we analyzed revenue, the gap widened further: Out of a total $22 billion in gross revenue generated during Q3 2019, the 1,526 publishers comprising the top 1 per cent generated $20.5 billion,” the author – Katie Williams – added. “Meanwhile, just $1.5 billion, or 7 per cent, or all revenue was left over for the 151,056 publishers in the bottom 99 per cent. That averages out to a little more than $9,900 per publisher per quarter.”

Interestingly, the report also found that there had been very little fluctuation in the 1 per cent’s revenue and download share dating back to Q3 2014. This means “if this trend remains unchanged, the vast majority of publishers will continue to compete for the minority of new users”.

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.

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