This IDC Presentation characterizes the mobile and handheld game console (i.e., Nintendo 3DS and 2DS) marketplace in 2016 as a whole and puts it in the broader context of gaming industry dynamics. IDC established a relationship with the mobile app analytics provider App Annie in 2012. App Annie tracks iOS and Google Play downloads and consumer spending and related metrics in particular detail. Together with IDC's in-depth tracking of handheld game consoles and other key elements of the global video game ecosystem, it's possible to create a concise but comprehensive view of portable gaming, which this Presentation attempts to do for 2016.
The Presentation compares smartphone, tablet, and handheld gaming from several vantage points and notes some key associated trends — such as the rapid emergence of augmented reality (AR) and virtual reality (VR) gaming in the United States last year. The Presentation identifies the global top-grossing mobile and handheld game console title in 2016 and notes an interesting relationship between mobile esports fans and VR gaming activity.
"Mobile game spending more than doubled up home video game console spending in 2016 worldwide," says Lewis Ward, IDC's research director of gaming and AR/VR. "Perhaps that helps explain why Nintendo and Sony pivoted toward mobile last year in a big way — and both companies made some noise on the top-grossing charts."