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Subscription-based Gaming Market

Subscription-based Gaming Market Size, Share, Competitive Landscape and Trend Analysis Report by Device Type, by Game Type : Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast, 2021-2031

IC : Entertainment & Media Technologies

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Author's: Vikas Sahebrao Gaikwad | Onkar Sumant
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Subscription-based Gaming Market Statistics: 2031

The global subscription-based gaming market was valued at $17.16 billion in 2021, and is projected to reach $55.94 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 12.9% from 2022 to 2031.

Increase in prices of services offered by key vendors to gain more profit is expected to hamper the growth of the market. Furthermore, emergence of cloud gaming and increase in number of SMEs in gaming sector are expected to provide lucrative opportunities to the Subscription-based Gaming Industry.

Subscription-based Gaming Market, Subscription-based Gaming Market Size, Subscription-based Gaming Market Share, Subscription-based Gaming Market Trends, Subscription-based Gaming Market Growth, Subscription-based Gaming Market Forecast, Subscription-based Gaming Market Analysis

A subscription-based model is one of the revenue models that has become increasingly popular for monetizing games, which sees users subscribe to join the games and pay a regular monthly fee to access the games and additional benefits. Subscription based gaming services provide a consistent source of revenue and an engaged audience that operator can monetize through microtransactions and paid downloads. This reduces risk associated with regular release of top-performing premium games.

Technological advancements in gaming sectors such as inclusion of artificial intelligence (AI), augmented reality (AR) and the release of 5G along with emergence of unlimited data plans are some factors driving the growth of subscription-based gaming market. In addition, increase in smartphones and internet penetration globally drive the Subscription-based Gaming Industry growth. For instance, according to Ericsson, the number of 5G mobile subscriptions in the Asia-Pacific region is anticipated to reach around 1,545 million by 2025.

Segment Review

The subscription-based gaming market is segmented into Device Type and Game Type.On the basis of game type, the market is segmented into action, shooting, sports, adventure, fighting, role-playing, racing and others. According to the device type, it is fragmented into smartphone, gaming consoles, PC and others.  Region wise, it is analyzed across North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, and LAMEA.

Subscription-based Gaming Market by Device Type

On the basis of device type, the smartphone segment dominated the subscription-based gaming market share in 2021, and is expected to maintain its dominance during the forecast period. Mobile gaming has recently overtaken console and PC gaming as the most popular game format worldwide. One of the few factors for the growth of mobile games is their availability. Almost everyone has a smartphone loaded with games. Also, increase in demand for mobile games is driven by various technological advancements and improvements such as AR, VR, cloud gaming and 5G. In addition, large companies that develop games for console and PC also publish their games in the mobile version, due to the mobile game market.

Subscription-based Gaming Market by Game Type

By game type, the action segment dominated the subscription-based gaming market size in 2021. Also, this segment is expected to maintain its dominance during the subscription-based gaming market forecast period. Action games improve the gamer’s perception, decision-making skills, and properly learn new tasks and information. Moreover, action games speed up the players’ processing skills or response to certain situations.  These benefits of action games are driving the growth of the subscription based gaming market. Moreover, action games improve multi-tasking qualities, which is boosting the adoption of action games in the subscription based gaming market.   

Subscription-based Gaming Market by Region

Asia-Pacific dominated the subscription-based gaming market in 2021. The market in the Asia-Pacific region is expected to register rapid growth during the forecast period. This is due to the internet penetration in developing countries such as India, Malaysia, Vietnam, China etc. along with the globalization, digitization, and the rise of cloud-based subscription games. In addition, emergence of 5G in the region along with increase in smartphone users in Asia-Pacific is also anticipated to propel the subscription-based gaming market growth in this region.

COVID-19 Impact Analysis

The global subscription-based gaming market was valued at $17.16 billion in 2021, and is projected to reach $55.94 billion by 2031, registering a CAGR of 12.9% from 2022 to 2031.  The current estimation of 2030 is projected to be higher than pre-COVID-19 estimates. The COVID-19 impact has prompted every company and business to shift their business operations toward a remote work environment. Moreover, due to strict guidelines issued by government authorities, people were forced to be in-house. This led to more leisure time available for each individual and gave rise to wide adoption of subscription games to spend quality time. The COVID-19 had a positive impact on the subscription-based gaming market.

Moreover, while the whole world had to stay indoors due to the pandemic, people were looking for ways to both entertain themselves and maintain their social connections. This also led to wide adoption of subscription games. For instance, according to a study by Streamlabs and Stream Hatchet, Twitch, one of the leading live streaming platform for gamers across the globe, saw an 83% year-on-year rise in viewership when the pandemic hit, with over 5 billion hours of content viewed in the second quarter of 2020 alone.

Top Impacting Factors   

Technological Advancements in Gaming Sector  

As technology progressed, the excitement and appeal of gaming only increased with more visual stimulus, creativity and satisfaction. Moreover, technology has refined online gaming in recent years to the extent that many games have blurred the lines between reality and fantasy.

Technological advancements such as augmented reality, virtual reality and artificial intelligence have made gaming more interesting and addictive. The evolution of technologies is rapidly increasing the adoption of the subscription based games as they offer unique experience and provide immense satisfaction to the gamers. These benefits are driving the subscription based gaming market.       

Increase in Smartphones and Internet Penetration

Increase in smartphone penetration and improved internet access in countries around the world continues to raise expectations for mobile gaming. High-end smartphones are now easily available; thus resulting in a sharp increase in the number of mobile gamers. This trend is more pronounced in fast developing countries such as India, China and Mexico. Moreover, advancements in smartphones such as wide screen and high RAM integration have resulted in more developments of mobile based subscription games. In addition, more smartphone users and improvements in mobile internet infrastructure (5G network deployments) and mobile hardware are also contributing to the growth of the market.

Key Benefits for Stakeholders

  • This report provides a quantitative analysis of the market segments, current trends, estimations, and dynamics of the subscription-based gaming market analysis from 2021 to 2031 to identify the prevailing subscription-based gaming market opportunities.
  • The market research is offered along with information related to key drivers, restraints, and opportunities.
  • Porter's five forces analysis highlights the potency of buyers and suppliers to enable stakeholders make profit-oriented business decisions and strengthen their supplier-buyer network.
  • In-depth analysis of the subscription-based gaming market segmentation assists to determine the prevailing market opportunities.
  • Major countries in each region are mapped according to their revenue contribution to the global market.
  • Market player positioning facilitates benchmarking and provides a clear understanding of the present position of the market players.
  • The report includes the analysis of the regional as well as global subscription-based gaming market trends, key players, market segments, application areas, and market growth strategies.

Subscription-based Gaming Market Report Highlights

Aspects Details
By Device Type
  • Smartphone
  • Console
  • PC
  • Others
By Game Type
  • Action
  • Shooting
  • Sports
  • Adventure
  • Fighting
  • Role-playing
  • Racing
  • Others
By Region
  • North America  (U.S., Canada)
  • Europe  (U.K., Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Netherlands, Rest of Europe)
  • Asia-Pacific  (China, India, Japan, Australia, South Korea, Rest of Asia-Pacific)
  • LAMEA  (Latin America, Middle East, Africa)
Key Market Players

Blacknut, Shadow, Tencent, Amazon Luna, Microsoft Corporation, NVIDIA Corporation, Sony Group Corporation, Google LLC, Vortex, Ubitus K.K.

Analyst Review

The global Subscription-based gaming market is projected to witness prominent growth, especially in Asia-Pacific and North America. This growth is attributed to increased investments by key players for Subscription-based gaming and adoption of cloud-based gaming solutions. In addition, the adoption of IoT (Internet of Things) based devices globally and technological advancements such as augmented reality (AR) provides ample growth opportunities for Subscription-based gaming market.

In addition, as per CXO insights, there are signs that cloud and subscription services are the next big things in the gaming industry. Gaming companies are offsetting the decline in hardware sales with a significant increase in subscription services. While console and PC are projected to continue to be the most important sources of revenue, the continued consumer shift toward subscription services delivered via PCs, smartphones and TVs will nearly halve revenue from boxed or downloaded PC games by 2022. Mobile gaming revenue growth will outpace console and PC revenues in the next few years as the gaming industry shifts toward the subscription economy.

Furthermore, gaming companies have accrued billions of dollars in profit and over 2.5 billion gamers around the world in the past few years, which will contribute to the expansion of gaming platforms into subscription business models in 2020.

Author Name(s) : Vikas Sahebrao Gaikwad | Onkar Sumant
Frequently Asked Questions?

The global subscription-based gaming market was valued at $17.16 billion in 2021, and is projected to reach $55.94 billion by 2031, registering a CAGR of 12.9% from 2022 to 2031

Asia-Pacific dominated the global market

Emergence of cloud gaming and increase in number of SMEs in gaming sector

Smartphone gaming

Amazon Luna, Blacknut, Google LLC, Microsoft Corporation, NVIDIA Corporation, Shadow, Sony Group Corporation, Tencent, Ubitus K.K. and VORTEX

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Subscription-based Gaming Market

Global Opportunity Analysis and Industry Forecast, 2021-2031