Although games have dominated the mobile app market for tablets in recent years, it appears the undisputed reign of games is coming to an end. According to a recent study published by Flurry Analytics, recent trends in mobile app consumption indicate users are spending at least as much time on social networking apps as they are playing games. In 2011 games constituted 25% of mobile consumption compared to social networking’s meager 15%; in 2012, the numbers were virtually neck-and-neck.
In fact, social networking seems to be the driving force behind much of the industry at the moment, considering that we now spend more time on our mobile apps than we do online. Many industry experts believe that the trend favoring social networking is what led to Facebook’s recent acquisition of Instagram. Whether Facebook saw the writing on the wall, or wrote the writing on the wall, it’s becoming clear that while games are definitely here to stay, the social aspect of mobile technology is the key element to determining success. Indeed, the social app’s spot as king of the hill breaks a 40-month winning streak held by game apps.
What this means for the entrepreneurial development community, of course, is that there is fertile territory to be exploited by those with the resources and creativity to develop mobile apps that appeal to both demographics. In other words, if you have an idea for a mobile app game that incorporates a social networking element, there’s never been a better time to begin developing it in earnest.
Of course, in much the same way that Instagram didn’t really bring anything revolutionary to the table, but merely combined photo editing and social networking and still managed to sell for a cool billion, there’s nothing new to the idea of social gaming, and nothing to suggest that it can’t be just as lucrative. So if you’ve been toying with the idea for the next Farmville, give us a call and we’ll help get you started.