Despite The Name, Report Finds “Mobile Games” Are Played Most Often At Home

Casual and mobile games company Miniclip has teamed up with app monetization platform and ad server MoPub, today releasing a joint study on the behavior of mobile gamers, breaking the group down by age, gender, and content preference. The biggest surprise from the study came in this little nugget of user behavior wisdom: Despite its name and connotation, 44 percent of gamers play “mobile games” on the couch versus playing in … really any out-of-living room location, “including time spent traveling or waiting,” the study says.

Miniclip, which has 15 million monthly active users and 65 million downloads, conducted the survey across its ad-supported mobile games over the course of three weeks, whereupon the data was then collected by MoPub.

Some of the other highlights of the study? Apparently moms rule the iPod Touch, as 73 percent of those who responded via iPod were female. In unsurprising news, apps that are featured prominently in the App Store or Android Market “drive maximum downloads,” as 37 percent of the audience downloaded apps because they were featured prominently. On the flip side, in much more surprising news, the study found that reviews trump the recommendation of friends, as a good review in the App Store was a stronger motivation for downloading at 18 percent, compared to a “recommendation from someone you trust,” at 14 percent.

The study comes on the heels of announcements from the two dominant platforms at GDC that highlighted the growing connection between mobile devices and games, as Google announced at the event that it will be rebranding the Android Market as “Google Play,” what it’s now calling a “digital entertainment destination.”

Less than 24-hours later, Apple announced its latest iPad, prominently featuring several up-and-coming gaming apps to showcase what’s possible in mobile gaming thanks to the device’s higher-res graphics and increased processing power. More from yours truly on that point here.

In a statement today, Parks Associates Research Analyst Pietro Macchiarella said it’s interesting to see the study proving that mobile games, which are fueled by powerful hardware and operating systems, are now beginning to compete for the very same couch that was once owned outright by console gaming. “The growth in tablet penetration will have an enormous impact on the size of the mobile gaming market,” the analyst concluded.

A separate study conducted by Parks Associates, called “Online Gaming and Digital Distribution,” supported the analyst’s supposition, finding that 71 percent of adults and 79 percent of teen tablet owners play games on their tablets for at least one hour per month. And as to which of the leading operating systems is winning the HTML5 gaming race, found in a recent study that iOS performs 3-times faster than Android. Not only that, but iOS devices and browsers (iPhone, iPad, and Safari) outshone their competitor across the board when it came to rendering movement on-screen.

In addition, keeping in mind that this report came out before the release of the new iPad, Spaceport found that the iPhone 4S and the iPad 2 scored high above the rest, handling over 200 moving objects and over 300 objects, respectively. Furthermore, the iPad 2 ranked as the top device for HTML5 and apps performance, crushing Android across the board.

Image Credit Chris Kohler