Currently estimated at $20 million, the US’ wireless gaming market will grow to $3 billion in 2006 as operators increase their focus on gaming for revenue. Globally, 120 million people are playing some kind of wireless game, with 22 million wireless game users in the US. Datamonitor expects that number to grow to 124 million by 2006 as new devices and services make wireless gaming more accessible.
It is commonly believed that wireless gamers play games on the trains or buses to pass time. However, according to Datamonitor, research across the US, Asia Pacific, and Europe, shows that the most popular time for people to play wireless games is on the weekends and in the evening.
While the introduction of technologies, such as Java 2 ME, Brew and ExEn, will take time, Datamonitor says that the ease of use of downloading games will encourage many users to take up the wireless game experience. At the same time, traditional developers will come to exploit this market, releasing downloads for wireless game versions of popular console and PC titles.