Let’s be honest, most of us would be lost without our favorite mobile device, whether it’s the latest smartphone or tablet. Along with our keys, it’s usually the one thing we can’t leave home without, mainly because that oblong-shaped gadget has become such an important part of our daily lives.
Far more than just a piece of tech we use for telephone conversations on the move, our smartphone is now a portable communications hub. We can instantly send messages via chat applications like WhatsApp or Telegram, while some people still use SMS texting as their preferred method. We can also connect to our favourite social networks such as Twitter or Facebook, maybe send images via Instagram or post videos on TikTok.
Those handy smartphones and tablets are a great way to get work done on the move, almost like we’re carrying a mini personal computer around, with lots of great functions and features at our disposal. What’s more, if we need to take a break and relax for a while, these devices can provide us with so many ways to entertain ourselves. We can catch up on news and gossip browsing websites, watch movies and TV shows, maybe play the latest hit mobile games.
How mobile gaming went viral
Back in 1998 when the Nokia 6110 and Nokia 5110 were launched, these popular mobile phones were an instant success. While still reliant on digital monochrome screens, they were the first to feature a more advanced user interface with menu icons. Importantly, they were also the first phones to have the simple but highly addictive Snake game pre-installed, which itself was actually based on the Blockade arcade game and originally created in 1976.
Interestingly, the simple addition of a game on these popular mobile phones is widely considered to have started a trend. Subsequent phone releases by Nokia always featured a newer version of the Snake game, while rival mobile manufacturers quickly jumped on the bandwagon, including similarly simple games like Tetris. Within a decade and by 2008, mobile games had generated around $5.8 billion in revenues.
Apple had already enjoyed huge success with their iMac desktop PC’s and iPod portable music players, so when Steve Jobs and Apple announced the first iPhone release in 2007, accompanied by the App Store, those bold moves completely revolutionized the mobile phone industry. Games developers flocked to make the most of this new tech and by 2008, there were more than 100,000 games on the App Store, generating over 2 billion downloads.
Nokia was the first phone provider to offer games on their mobile devices back in the 1990s.
The mass appeal of mobile gaming
These days, our smartphones and tablets have become the all-in-one device for practically everything we want to do, with non-voice activities now the most popular form of usage. People don’t tend to make voice calls these days, which means that messaging, social media, and emails have become the most common methods of communication. We also use our smartphones to browse the internet and take photos, with both features now integral.
Aside from these practical functions, the use of mobile devices for gaming has continued to boom at a remarkable rate, embracing every genre and style we can imagine, appealing to a bigger audience than anyone might have previously imagined. The demand for mobile gaming has also become so massive and highly competitive, it created an industry estimated to be worth around $114 billion in 2021, with more than 2.3 billion mobile gamers worldwide.
There are now gaming options of every flavor at our fingertips, providing entertainment and engagement to suit every taste. Gaming has also encouraged a merging of different industries over the last couple of decades, with the online gambling industry has also enjoyed huge success. This industry has seen a huge success in mobile sports betting and online casinos with many players no opting to play classic casino table games and slot machines online. Bingo is also a popular mobile game with many now partaking in a game of online bingo rather than visiting a bingo hall. And with the mobile bingo industry now big and more providers entering the market, players are now wanting to know the best ways to win bingo. With more opportunities to play a game of bingo, thanks to mobile, players are able to practice and advance their bingo skills further to help them win.
The practicalities of mobile gaming popularity
Arguably the biggest reason for the mobile gaming boom is a simple matter of convenience. No longer do we have to rely on a PC or console to play our favorite games, because mobile devices have advanced so much and so quickly in recent years, we can now play many of the same games on our smartphones and tablets. The previous mention of bingo was one example, which could only be enjoyed at dedicated venues or on home computers before.
We can take our gaming with us wherever we go, spending as little or as much time playing as we want. It really doesn’t matter if we’re traveling somewhere on a train or plane, kicking back and relaxing somewhere in the city or countryside. So long as there’s online access available, whether it’s to a WiFi hotspot or super-fast 5G networks, we can instantly get connected to our favorite gaming entertainment.
The success of mobile gaming is mainly due to convenience and players being able to access the games anywhere and at any time.
As the technology surrounding mobile gaming continues to evolve at an exciting pace, with gaming having also progressed to make the most of what our mobile devices and connections can provide, it’s hard not to be thrilled when anticipating what the future might bring. This could include greater Augmented Reality (AR) and Virtual Reality (VR) gaming options, transporting us to new realms, no matter what surrounds us in the real world.
The gadget that gives us everything
More than 30 years ago, Microsoft founder Bill Gates predicted that in the future, we would all have a computer at home that gives us access to everything we need. This would be a hub for managing our homes, our work, and even all our entertainment options. To some extent that prophecy has come true, although even he couldn’t project just how fast technology advance. That hub is now in our hands or in our pocket, and mobile everything is the future.