Mobile gaming has evolved from Facebook-oriented games like Farmville (remember that one!) to real-time strategy games like Game of War and Clash of Clans, to a new level of prominence now with the popularity of the Battle Royale and MOBA games. However, gaming today does not generate a lot of traffic (outside of downloads), so does gaming really matter for mobile?
I'm glad you asked! (Ok, I know I asked the question, but if we were in a conversation with network operators, they would have asked the question, so I am just being proactive.)
There is a game in the top 20 applications on mobile on both the downstream and upstream and, if you are a gamer, you probably can guess what it is...any takers?
Yes, the #1 game by traffic volume on mobile networks is Player Unknown Battlegrounds (better known to gamers as PUBG). It is #20 on the downstream (ahead of some major video streaming sites and even Apple and Microsoft Updates) and #16 on the upstream. Overall, it comes in at .65% of all mobile traffic, which is actually pretty significant for a mobile game.
What are the rest of the top 10 mobile games?
3. Garena Free Fire
5. Call of Duty Mobile
6. Pokemon Go
7. League of Legends
9. Mobile Legends
10. Clash Royale
Most of those are not a surprise, but for those that do not know, Garena Free Fire has 100M users worldwide and 1.7M followers on Twitch, even if it does not have the attention that PUBG does.
But there is a new storm brewing...cloud gaming. Buried in the Mobile Report at #319 is GeForce Now and at #1005 is Google Stadia. Most mobile networks cannot deliver the latency required for solid cloud gaming (and often not even the performance for 4K gaming), but 5G promises to change that, so we shall see next year. Even a tiny bit of cloud gaming will jump these offerings up the charts, as they can consume up to 35Mbps on the downstream just like a 4K video stream does today. That moves you up the charts...quickly.
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Cam is the Vice President of Government Solutions. He is an avid follower of Global Internet Phenomena and network trends. He also loves football (the real kind played with a round ball) as well as an active blogger for Sandvine on a wide range of technology and business issues. Areas of expertise: internet trends, virtualization, analytics, network optimization, enterprise services