Games and infotainment business to be worth US$65bn by 2016

13 Jun 2012

Strong demand for games and infotainment apps fostered by the growth in smartphones and tablet computers will push mobile entertainment revenues to more than US$65bn, new research claims.

According to Juniper, the mobile entertainment business was valued at US$36bn last year.

Juniper says that while the transition to an app-store centric ecosystem had dramatically increased consumer adoption of casual games, it had also resulted in the development of a far greater variety of content for mobile devices. As a result, revenues across a spectrum of infotainment services – most notably leisure and lifestyle applications – have already experienced dramatic growth.

However, the report observed that while overall entertainment revenues would continue to increase steadily, some sectors would fare less well.

It highlighted the music sector as a case in point, where growth in streaming subscriptions and full-track downloads have been more than offset by the continuing decline in ringtones.

Furthermore, with the global ringtone market expected to peak this year, by 2016 the music sector as a whole is expected to be worth just 80pc of its peak 2008 dollar value.

The tablet computer is the kingmaker

“For applications such as streamed TV, multiplayer gaming or casino gambling, tablets offer a richer, more immersive experience than smartphones,” report author Dr Windsor Holden said.

“This is already translating into markedly higher usage – and consumer spend – on selected apps within these areas.”

The Far East and China will account for the largest share of mobile entertainment revenues throughout the forecast period.

While network operators have largely been bypassed by OTT storefronts, they should seek to leverage their billing relationship to retain a share of entertainment revenues.

Virtual life image via Shutterstock

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years