As the Indian gaming market is poised to hit $3.9 billion (in value) by 2025, over 40% of hardcore mobile gamers are paying for their games with an average spend of Rs 230 per month, a new report by the Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) showed on Tuesday. The pandemic has accelerated the organic growth of digital games as mobile app downloads grew by 50% and user engagement went up by 20%.
The increased gaming time has spurred the growth of hardcore gamers in India, even as casual games remain the most popular genre in India, said the report, prepared in collaboration with smartphone brand OnePlus and Bengaluru-based market research firm RedSeer.
"We are at the cusp of a gaming revolution and the gaming ecosystem is working towards user-friendly smartphones and leveraging 5G technologies," Telangana's Principal Secretary, Industries and Commerce, and IT, Jayesh Ranjan, said.
"The gaming sector has underlined the significance of affordable smartphones with capable hardware," he said while launching the report.
India is currently home to over 430 million mobile gamers and the number is estimated to grow to 650 million by 2025. Currently, mobile gaming dominates the sector, contributing more than 90% to the current $1.6 billion gaming market in the country.
"The (global] gaming industry can be matched with electronics, and consoles could be manufactured in India, Joint Secretary, Electronics and Information Technology, Saurabh Gaur said, voicing support for creating games for the domestic audience based on the Indian culture.
Indian gaming has joined the mobile gaming bandwagon due to the rapid increase in smartphone penetration in the country, with large console and PC games now being curated for mobile platforms. The sector is also attracting investments, with nearly $1 billion being invested in the sector in the last six months.
"Over the past few years, the e-gaming industry in India has grown tremendously, driven by the rising avenues for digitisation and improved accessibility centred around innovation and affordability by OEMs (original equipment manufacturers," OnePlus India Vice President, Chief Strategy Officer and Head of India Sales Navnit Nakra said.
Smartphones have become more affordable and pack strong hardware that are equipped to run games which may require medium to high specifications. This has opened accessibility to more immersive gaming for the masses.
"In the last 12 years, we had to update our GPUs (graphics processing units) over 700 times, that's the demand coming in from the consumers," Qualcomm Vice President and President, Rajen Vagadia said.