Deciphering the Indian Mobile Gaming Market — Part I

Setting the context

A quick Google search on the term ‘Indian mobile gaming market’ and you can find links of news articles from various publications citing different numbers about how this is the next big thing!

Here are a few such articles linked below

This list continues with many such similar features and commentaries.

What do these news say?

If you take a look at all this chatter going around this topic in the past few years, there are some common talking points which are not very hard to notice.

  1. The Indian market is one of the top mobile markets in terms of overall downloads.
  2. Over the past few years, the number of downloads on the app stores from India have grown radically.
  3. Indian market has seen many successes in the genres of Bollywood and Cricket, which are the highly popular entertainment commodities in the country.
  4. China is an example of one of the biggest markets, and there is a similar potential in India by virtue of the high population and the increasing mobile penetration among the masses.
  5. Localisation and local content is the way to success in this expanding Indian scene.
  6. The carrier billing initiatives are going to increase the game purchases in India.

All the talk and speculations on this topic have always been something on these lines.

What is missing?

Though all the points mentioned above are completely valid to justify the exponential growth potential of the market, there are some questions which seem to stay unanswered or slightly sidelined in all these hyped up talks.

  1. What is the money making potential of this market?
  2. How effective and long lasting are the strategies of generating local game content?
  3. Apart from the similarities of population with China, what are the dissimilarities that would make the Indian market different from China?
  4. The strong point of this market is the number of users. How can this translate to a ‘Made in India’ top grossing title instead of just a top downloaded one.

What am I doing here?

Through a series of such posts, I am attempting to improve my understanding about the Indian mobile gaming market. I’ll try and answer the questions I have raised by trying to look at things with my own perspective. I might answer some quite easily while I might find new questions over the course of time.

If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change. — Wayne Dyer

As of now, I have no idea of what and when my next post will be. The whole idea of making a ‘Part- I’ post was that the bit of completionist in me will make a slightly more active effort to get the next part out soon.

Going forward, I intend to interact with more people and understand everyone’s views and opinions on this topic as well. So if you are still reading this and there is anything I have missed out on, anything that doesn’t make sense, anything you would like to suggest or question, or maybe you just want to call this out as pointless and stupid, feel free to do so in any form of communication — from the comments below to a pigeon post.