Mobile Gaming Market in Australia

Mobile gaming is not only fun, but a highly profitable industry around the world. Here at Crikey, we’re proud to call Sydney our home base, and wanted to shed some light on the flourishing industry happening right here on home turf.


Let’s Begin with the Global Appetite for Mobile Games

There are 2.2 billion mobile gamers in the world, and this number is expected to rise to 2.7 billion by 2021, according to forecasts from Statista.

Mobile users spent a whopping $39.7 billion globally on mobile games and apps combined, with $29.6 billion coming from mobile games on the iOS App Store and Google Play Store during Q1 and Q2 2019.  In other words, 75% of all mobile purchases happen on mobile games, as reported by Sensor Tower.

Overall, revenue on mobile games increased by 11.3% between H1 2018 and H1 2019, with new mobile games installs reaching 20.1 billion.

With opportunity (and competition) this abundant, it’s time to step up your game.


Australia’s Mobile Game Market

Now the world’s 14th biggest game market in terms of revenue, Australia is a hotbed for creativity, innovation and mobile game entertainment.  Here are key stats collected from NewZoo:

  • 4 million players
  • $1.3 billion in game revenues; posting 11% revenue growth fueled by the purchase of in-game extras
  • 55% of paying gamers spent money on in-game items or virtual goods within six months of taking the survey.

What are Ozzies buying?  Women spent on power-ups, while men bought DLC/Expansion (downloadable content) packs.


Local Gamedev Workforce in Australia

Last year IGEA (Interactive Games and Entertainment Association) released a report to show the size and strength of the Australian games industry, but those in the dev community thought the numbers were low and set out to update the figures.  A fascinating article from, reveals that the Australian games workforce is bigger than previously reported.  Here’s what was collected:

There are roughly 1300 people working in the Australian games industry

  • Victoria is home to 39% of the AU development (the bulk of the community)
  • QLD is home to 31 studios and 239 staff, representing roughly 16% of the game-related employee population
  • NSW is also home to 40 studios, rivaling the size of QLD.

There are a number of major game publishers and game development employers with an HQ or sizable office based in Australia:

  • Firemonkeys/EA (Melbourne)
  • Zero Latency (Melbourne)
  • Aristocrat Gaming/Big Fish (Sydney)
  • Scientific Games (Las Vegas, Sydney office)
  • Isobar (Game marketing/digital agency, Sydney office)
  • Ubisoft (marketing office in Sydney)


If San Francisco is dubbed Silicon Valley, and Santa Monica is called Silicon Beach, could Sydney become the next Silicon Harbour and Melbourne the next Silicon Bay?  We know it’s coming soon.


Cheers from Crikey

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