As the second-largest revenue stream of the global gaming industry, online games continue generating millions of dollars in profit from its huge player base. According to data presented by Safe Betting Sites, the entire online games segment is expected to hit $18.1bn in revenue in 2020, a $1.2bn increase year-on-year.
The Number of Users to Touch 1 Billion by 2022
The online games market refers to multiplayer internet gaming and social gaming directly in the net browser or through applications. This segment of the gaming industry includes subscription-based titles like World of Warcraft and free-to-play games with additional in-game buys like Fortnite.
In 2017, the revenue of the global online games segment amounted to $16.7bn, 2.6 times less than mobile games, and $2.7bn more compared to download games, revealed the Statista Digital Market Outlook. The following years have witnessed a steady growth of the global online gaming revenues, with the figure rising by nearly 9% between 2017 and 2020.
Statistics indicate the number of people playing online games also significantly increased in the last three years. In 2017, there were 731.2 million players globally. Since then, the number of users grew by 27%, reaching 931.7 million in 2020, a 12.7% increase year-on-year.
According to a Statista survey, Millennials (people between 25 to 34) and Gen Z (between 18 and 24) represent the major user groups, with 37% and 22% share. By 2022, the number of people playing online games is forecast to jump over one billion worldwide, with user penetration of 13.4%.
China is the Leading Online Games Market
Although the number of users in the online games segment is set to increase in the following years, statistics show the average revenue per user has been affected by a downsizing trend. In 2017, the average revenue per user amounted to $22.85. In the last three years, this figure plunged 14% to $19.53 in 2020.
Analyzed by geography, China represents the leading online games market globally, with more than $4.5bn in revenue in 2020. The United States ranked second, with a $3.8 billion profit this year. Japanese online gamers are expected to generate over $3bn in revenue in 2020. South Korea and the United Kingdom follow with $1.3bn and $935 million in revenue, respectively.