News Article

Smartphones And Tablets To Be "Primary Screen For Gamers" By 2017

Posted by Damien McFerran

Juniper Research cites falling 3DS and Wii U sales forecasts as proof

According to analyst group Juniper Research, smartphone and tablet devices will be the "primary screen for gamers" by the year 2017, thanks to the increasing dominance of mobile tech and the rapidly-advancing standard of games available. Juniper predicts that a whopping 64.1 billion games will be downloaded to mobile devices in 2017, compared to 21 billion last year.

The report points out that traditional games consoles — such as Nintendo's Wii U and 3DS — are losing ground to mobile devices, as evidenced by the fact that Nintendo has cut sales forecasts for the two systems by 27% and 14% respectively.

Tablet gaming in particular is cited as a massive area for growth, as report author Siân Rowlands explains:

Tablet games are growing so much because they are such an accessible way for all consumer segments to access games. In particular mid-core gamers, who previously spent a lot of money and time playing games but now have jobs, families or other commitments, are driving this trend. These people are really embracing the tablet form factor, and innovative gameplay devices such as the mobile based Ouya console, really appeal to them.

The report also covers free-to-play gaming and in-app purchasing, and states that consoles like the 3DS are at a disadvantage when it comes to this kind of "freemium" mechanic as they do not have the same cellular connectivity as smartphones and cannot download new content on the move. According to Juniper, mobile owners will spend over $6 billion on in-app purchases in 2016, while tablet players will spend around half that figure.

Say what you will about the overall quality of mobile and tablet games, but there are some fearsome numbers being predicted in this report. Is this simply a case of the games industry expanding to accommodate new players, or are we really seeing a migration from traditional consoles to devices such as Apple's iPhone and Google's Nexus range? Share your thoughts by leaving a comment below.


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User Comments (150)



duffmmann said:

yeah... I don't see it happening. They'll always be great for casual games, but without a practical way to integrate physical buttons, they'll never take over the handheld hardcore gaming scene.



APHughes said:

If a handheld comes out with a D pad and physical buttons then Nintendo should worry.



Whopper744 said:

If iphone games completely take over then gaming will not be so interesting to me anymore. I think games like Angry Birds can be fun, but they are not anything compared to a game like The Legend of Zelda. Call me old fashion (i'm only 23), but I prefer having buttons anyway.



SCAR said:

Not gonna happen. Games will always be best on actual gaming machines. Both of Nintendo's devices have touch screens, and have more capabilities most of the time.
Anyone that likes gaming would never choose a phone or a tablet over the 3DS or Wii U for gaming.



Shanksta said:

Yeah, right. The day that happens is the day I quit playing videogames forever. A.K.A. Never. Most mobile games that are 'casual' are crappy anyway so I don't think any "real" gamer will ever go that far.



Zodiak13 said:

Well I won't be joining in, I refuse to even have a cell phone. I may be a zombie at home for 2hours a day playing one of my game systems, but I am unwilling to become a smart phone zombie. Everone has there face in their phone's all day long. I see people sitting at lunch together, never say a word to eachother but instead mess with their phone. That seems to be the norm these days too, not an exception.



siavm said:

By then something new will probably be out that makes smartphones and tablets like uncool in consumers eyes and why will still be here.



Nestalgic said:

I agree with this assessment. A lot of people purchased the Wii because it was a more accessible way to get into video games. But tablets and phones serve that same purpose. You aren't going to be able to crack into that segment of the market once they start getting into their tablets. In the end you're going to see only the "hardcore" gamers buying systems (as we're seeing with the Wii U already). My 3DS XL will probably be the last pure video game system I buy. I'm not someone who goes gaga over new graphics or play control. And if I can hook up a bluetooth wiimote or ps3 controller to my tablet and play, I could see that as the future of gaming for me at some point.



evanescent_hero said:

The only way hardcore gamers are going to move from console (or PC) to tablet is if tablets start coming out:
(a) with physical buttons,
(b) that offer console-quality games that play AT LEAST as well and look AT LEAST as good as on their consoles, and
(c) at a price point that is comparable to consoles.

Until these things happen, hardcore gamers won't accept a tablet as opposed to a console. Now, I wouldn't be surprised if in four years this technology was possible and normal, so perhaps this will come true. Gaming tablets already exist, though they're pretty expensive at the moment, but I do expect them to become more mainstream. Is 2017 a reasonable estimate? Perhaps. Tablets have been around for a while and technology gets better every day.



Nintex said:

well if this happens then I guess I'll hang up my gaming "Hat" for good



Yanchamaru said:

I see the same thing happening with my family. My nieces and nephews prefer to play games on the Kindle and iPad instead of the DS. The consoles they have sit by the TV collecting dust.



AVahne said:

Once more phones are designed like Xperia Play to have a full or almost full gamepad built in (with better buttons than the Play of course, that thing wasn't so great) and once more controllers come out that use an actual standard controller API that can be used on ALL non-gesture-only smartphone games, then smartphones can start making a case.
And once smartphones are able to get a virtual reality MMO game like in the .hack games and movies with near-realistic graphics and that use a small and compact headset (in the form of glasses preferably), THEN consoles will be in trouble.



RikuzeYre said:

Phones? No, the fact that its a phone limits it entirely, tablets on the other hand will have more accessibility. But controls still suck and this "premise: is a load of poppycock



IxnayontheCK said:

Total poopies. I hate tablet games i'll only bother with them mindlessly if i'm in a que or something. When i want a REAL game, with REAL controls, i'll use my gaming systems...



ThePirateCaptain said:

I've been having pretty bad allergies the past few days, and when lying around in bed, I found myself playing my 3DS much more often than my iPod Touch or iPhone. There are some good games on mobile devices, but it will never be a substitute for a real gaming console for me.



SirQuincealot said:

there might be more people using tablets and phones to games, but i dont think that means actual gamers will use them, real gamers will still user consoles ore dedicated gaming systems to play.



HeatBombastic said:

Even though I don't think it'll happen by 2017, it's gonna happen someday. Someday you'll be able to use your phone as a console, as a portable console, etc. Not as a phone, but as a do everything device. Just plug in your phone into the tv and you can play games like Injustice, Call of Duty, maybe the big 3 will move to all around devices. If the legend of zelda moves to not a smartphone, but a device you can use as a phone, and a console, it'll be just as good. Controller can connect to it, so we don't have to worry too much about buttons.



Ryno said:

I don't care. My NES and SNES will always be hooked up to my TV.



Williaint said:

This means.... Nintendo DID make the right move, in having a tablet.
Kids these days, though...
They are turning "hardcore" gaming, into what used to be "casual" gaming...



HeatBombastic said:

@SirQuincealot In the future, it's possible that your phone could also be your pc, console, portable console, notebook, and more. That's what's going to kill consoles. It's not coming tomorrow or something, just when technology advances enough.



DreamOn said:

The fact that they mentioned the Ouya console makes me question this report.



HeatBombastic said:

@AltDotNerd In several years, you'll be proven wrong. If the big 3 don't move to multi-function devices, someone else will, and they'll die. I estimate 10 years, and then Nintendo probably will have multi-function devices (that are mainly for games, but can be used as phones), that have Pokemon, Zelda, Mario, etc. It'll easily be possible with technology growing. There are just so many people that don't want to grow. Nintendo will still be here, our video games will still be here, just on a device we can do more than just play games with.



Tasuki said:

Thats like saying console gamers will become PC gamers. Each format is not going to overcome the other no matter what anyone says. PC gamers will also stick to PCs, console gamers will always stick to consoles and smartphone gamers will always stick with smartphones. Of course you will have some that jump between formats but the dedicated ones will always support their media of choice.



Peach64 said:

I can't see myself ever giving up on handheld consoles, but in the last 5 years the sort of games I buy on handhelds has changed a lot, because of IOS games. Any pick up and play for 5 minutes type of games I'll get on my phone, since it will always me in my pocket. Things like brain training games, puzzle games, rhythm games, all work better on a phone for me now.

I don't want to play a 30 hour + RPG on my phone though (but I can see the appeal on iPad, Baldur's gate and Bastion were both pretty awesome). I'm never going to want to play stuff like Super Mario 3D Land or Luigi's Mansion on a phone. For that, I'll always want my handhelds.

I think it's pretty hypocritical from a lot of Nintendo fans to suggest games can't be good without buttons however. Nintendo makes two consoles that are all about new ways to control games, but then when a phone does the same thing, people suddenly become close-minded and say lack of buttons makes it useless? It comes across as being afraid of the impact of these smart phones, since clearly for a lot of people, lack of buttons is not a big deal.

When a game is made from the ground up for a smartphone, it can be just as good as any handheld or console game, just in a different way. Year Walk is in my top 5 games of the year so far! There's a huge number of brilliant IOS games out there, and most of them cost very little. Sometimes even ports can work better on a phone or tablet (World of Goo).



NintyMan said:

Why didn't they consider Microsoft's and Sony's games? They are getting new consoles.

No, I don't think iphone and tablet games are going to take over the game industry. How could they replace a fully fleshed-out game? These iphone tablet games are for the most part very light and meant to be played in short bursts, not a full experience like a handheld console's games.



edcomics said:

A lot of people seem to think that hardcore gamers outnumber casual gamers, but I think it's the other way around. Nintendo surely relies heavily on casual gamers to buy their hardware and software. The problem is that smart devices offer a lot more than just gaming, and both smart devices and gaming hardware cost a lot of money. People are more likely to shell out the cash for a more useful piece of hardware like a smart phone. Once in hand, it turns out there are games that can be played on the smart phone as well. These may be casual games, but trust me — people become addicted to them. Whether it's Angry Birds or Draw with Friends (or whatever it's called), people just can't put their phones down. And again, they can use their phones for internet browsing, GPS, text messaging, etc... I don't know how it is for other people, but during the summer time especially, I have limited pocket space. I think people are more likely to keep a smart phone in their pocket than a 3DS. My point? The casual market is shifting toward smart devices. If the hardcore gaming market becomes merely a niche... is Nintendo really going to make money from that? Eventually, if sales are low, Nintendo will surely abandon ship when it comes to electronics and then focus more on other uses for their intellectual properties. We already know a huge chunk of their profits come from Pokemon, and that stretches WAY beyond video games at this point. This, of course, is an extreme forecast, but the possibility exists.



Portista said: primary screen will always be the T.V.. How could you have an amazing game on your tablet? Not possible.



Hunter-D said:

It's all well and good. These impressive numbers for Smartphones & Tablets will only continue to increase but at the end of the day if you really want to have the complete gaming experience you're going to need a dedicated video games console, be it handheld, or at home (inc. PC).



Selene said:

One all purpose device would be wonderful, but I hate the fact smartphones and tablets have no buttons for playing games. Plus they lack all Nintendo exclusives. If Nintendo made a phone/game system though, that'd be wonderful.



DarkKirby said:

People who do and report these kinds of research have not, and have no intention to, ever play full fledged games like Zelda or Bayonetta.

Thinks Angry Birds is the peak of gaming.



C7_ said:

Anyone ever notice how the projections that seem the most unlikely are always 4 years away?
Did you also notice that in 2009 there was a very significant percentage of the population that thought the world would end before 2013, and if it didn't we would have found a more efficient source of energy?

Just an observation.



AcesHigh said:

I see another video game crash like in '84 happening. And it will start on smart phones. Its easy to see the allure of mobile games. They are inexpensive, easy to get access to and in great abundance. They prey on our decreasing attention span as a global society. I have a tablet too and fall victim to downloading new and pretty games frequently. But not because they are good games. But because of the reasons I shared above. And maybe because I hope to find a diamond in the rough. In truth, there are many games out on the mobile market that are gorgeous! But they are just shells of the games we are used to as console gamers. I have yet to find a game that has the content, depth, story and elements necessary to give players new game play mechanics throughout a full and lengthy game campaign that is fulfilling after 20 plus hours. No matter how pretty and inexpensive these games are, they are just mini games and fetch quests. I have yet to finish any game on a mobile device simply because I have lost interest within the first couple of hours.

And then, on the few games out there that actually HAVE good mechanics and a full game experience, the virtual controls simply kill it dead.

Yes, I see the mobile gaming platform increasing temporarily. But I see it crashing in a couple of years as people get tired of the thousands of me-too, shallow games. And i dont see it improving because the very two things that make mobile gaming so appealing - cheap or free gaming and ultimate portability - cannot exist with the money thats required to develop rich and engaging games like zelda and the physical controls required to immerse the gamer fully into that game. In short, you will never have the same gaming experience that you do on a dedicated gaming device for less than $10. The people who dont care about deep gaming experiences will get bored and move on to the next popular thing. And the people who do will go back to dedicated consoles (as I have focused most of my attention BACK to dedicated machines) - and mobile gaming will fade into the background if not away in a few years.



Cengoku said:

I tried a few times to play games on mobile but it's funny just for 10 minutes. After that, i can delete the game (non free included).



sonicfan1373 said:

This does not mean that by 2017 Nintendo will not have a smart device with proper console controls. Smart devices today do not have the experiences available on them to make gamers want to switch, indeed I believe that gamers will purchase smart devices but not to serve their primary gaming needs (at this point anyways). Nintendo will really disrupt the market if they create a system with a console like eco-system and physical interfaces but also with apps, media functionality, and multitasking capabilities.

The 3DS is coming very close in terms of both software and hardware to a smart gaming console. In terms of software and hardware, the 3DS has a dual core processor and 128 MB ram (I believe split between two ram chips). Nintendo uses 1 core of the 3DS for games and 1 core for the system menu and the ram is split in a similar fashion as well. A Nintendo smart console will do the same thing in terms of resource management as a 3DS but thanks to newer ARM processors (like the Cortex A9 which is powerful yet inexpensive thanks to extensive use in the industry and pretty soon the Cortex A15) and the decreasing price of mobile memory, Nintendo will be able to implement full functionality of a smart device and a superior handheld console. Nintendo can make two versions of this system, one as an inexpensive phone (around $229-$249 without contract) and one as a typical media/hand-held game console ($189-199).



AVahne said:

Well one thing people should at least take note of:
Smartphone and tablet gaming is evolving.



evanescent_hero said:

@Peach64 The difference is that both these Nintendo consoles actually HAVE buttons. If the Wii U was entirely touch controlled, I would have been significantly less likely to buy it. The reason the Kinect sucks is because it's all virtual with NO physical interface. Skyward Sword on Kinect would have been terrible, but the controls work beautifully on the Wii remote because you can actually hold something in your hand and press buttons to cause actions. I like my Wii U and my Wii and the new experiences they offer, but playing Mario or Metroid without buttons would be horrendous.



Flashman said:

@Fudgewhizzle How much money do you actually think a small niche gaming community would generate when compared to the cost of continuing to make AAA titles if the analysts are correct in predicting migration to mobile gaming.

I read that there is a drop in traditional gaming sales by 25% year on year. Surely it would make traditional consoles a non sustainable business!!



AltDotNerd said:

@HeatBombastic Then again, these are just "studies" done by people who always assume the near future is as predictable as the end of a movie. In those 4 years, who knows? Nintendo could come out with a game so amazing that it puts smartgames to shame.



SCAR said:

It already has such games. Lego, Monster Hunter, and basically every game on Wii U is better than a smartphone or tablet game.
Even Super Mario World is a better game than any smartphone game, IMO.



DerpSandwich said:

In ten years? Maybe we won't have consoles anymore. In four? The idea is literally laughable. I wonder if these guys are taking bets...



Neram said:

This report is just so full of fail. It's obviously been conducted by people who don't really know anything about video games and who think they can "tell all" simply by looking at current trends.



Pikachupwnage said:

They do realize that downloading a free copy of angry birds and playing it 5 minutes doesn't mean your a "gamer" right?



CrazyOtto said:

I like playing games on my nephew's smartphone, but they don't replace real games.



FluttershyGuy said:

Yeah. I'll just repeat what has already been said here by many: If that happens, I will either find a new hobby, or take up retro-only gaming. Those of you who like touch-gaming, great for you! But, I don't, and I get so sick of the media trying to shove smartphones & tablet gaming down our throats!!!



Pokefanmum82 said:

when tablets cost less than 200 for a really good one then i will believe it. I'm sorry but some gamers can't afford a 300 dollar tablet or smartphone to play games. I've tried playing games off of IOS and i hated it. I prefer pressing buttons. Not saying that all IOS games suck. It's just my personal preference. my kids love their 3DSes and the Wii. And won't be getting an expensive tablet or smartphone until they can pay for it themselves, that won't be until 2023 or later. So sorry I don't believe it at all.



Jellitoe said:

controlling games with a tough screen (especially the non stylus screens) is horrible. This will never happen, gamers will always prefer a handheld system over a smartphone, and casuals, well who cares.



sonicfan1373 said:


lol Juniper Research is a company filled with analysts with a business degree, of course most of them do not know or care about the industries they are analyzing.



HeatBombastic said:

@AltDotNerd Tons of titles on consoles put iOS and Android games to shame. But there are so many idiots in the comment section. You were the only guy to reply to me, out of all the people here who disagree with me, you were the only one.

What smartphone gaming is now won't be the same in about ten years. It won't be smartPHONES, it could be smartconsoles. You'll be able to connect it to a tv, and play it with a traditional controller. You'll be able to disconnect it from your tv and bring it with you. If it's for gaming, but it's also multi-purpose, it could also have buttons and circle pads. Nintendo could move to this, heck, all the big 3 could move to this. Game developers and their AAA games will move to smartconsoles. Indie devs will, too. The Vita and 3DS will most likely be the last handhelds that are made JUST for games. It'll be your phone, your mic, your do-everything tool.

How is this bad?



Capt_N said:

@Peach64: I think the main problem is that like something similar to what @evanescent_hero: said, & that is that button/traditional-style controls need to come w/ the newer controls, what/e those newer controls are. I have no problem w/ touch-screen controls, or motion controls, but I prefer the inclusion, & use of traditional button controls. I agree w/ you that games built for a specific platform can be awesome, as of course, they were made from scratch, w/ said platform in mind.

@sonicfan1373: "The 3DS is coming very close in terms of both software and hardware to a smart gaming console." If you mean the ability to freeze a game to make notes on it, or quickly jump into the net to get tips on it, that multi-tasking memory, then yes, I kind of do agree w/ you on that. I can appreciate that.

My issues w/ smartphone/tablet gaming is/are:
1. Smart devices(Smart Phones/tablets) allow other to know a lot of your business, even your location, etc. Technology is much easier for co.s, & just any random ppl to abuse, than years ago. Think Google Glass. It's not the tech; it's the ppl who have access to it, & intentionally abuse it, for the sake of invading privacy, & hurting ppl in various ways.
2. The tech is ridiculously expensive.
3. SmartPhone/Tablet co.s make their main profit from service contracts, & subscriptions respectively, all full of gotchas. I refuse to pay for something so high, & full of gotchas, & even more so, for services, &/or features I (literally) don't ever use.
4. As I mentioned above, I'm fine w/ different controls, as long as a console includes traditional button control, & that each game is made from scratch, or optimized to the fullest, to use certain control schemes. Smartphones, & Tablets currently lack buttons.



HawkeyeWii said:

I have a 3DS and a Nexus 7 tablet and I have to say that none, absolutely none of the Nexus 7 tablet games can compare to any of the games I have on 3DS.
I really don't like tablet/mobile phone gaming, because there isn't a controller and when there is, it is a virtual one that you can't feel and it is extremely awkward to play.



Havkri said:

Unless a smartphone game can give me the same stories, the same length and atmosphere, and the same overall experience i get when i play console games, i dont see this happening. i will never give up games like Zelda or fire emblem for cheap simple minded games that takes nothing but minutes to complete. games like angry birds can be fun but only for so long.



Farmboy74 said:

I wouldn't be too quick to dismiss tablets and smartphones. In the near future (this year) Wikipad are releasing a 7 inch tegra 3 gaming tablet which comes with a gamepad dock. They're aiming to release this android tablet for $249 in the US £249 UK. If you wanted too you can already hook up your android phone to a PS3 controller and buy a gameklip dock which effectively turns your phone into a mini console add to that gamepads like the Moga and you can see why these reports are coming out. Things are a bit different on IOS, but again there a bluetooth controller docks that will connect to your phone.
While most of the apps do not reach the quality of what is released on consoles there are a few gems which you can easily sink plenty of time into. Also there is a price difference for IAP. For example Zen Pinball will set you back on average £1.34 per table on android. For a single table on the eshop its £2.34. Also it has the star wars tables on android which are on sale at the moment for 69p per table.
While the phones and tablets are not as powerful as the current crop of consoles you can still have some good gaming experiences with Angry Birds not being included.



Mario-Man-Child said:

I consider myself a gamer and I will not be using a mobile phone as my number one gaming device 'ever'. These firms make me laugh with their predictions. Mobile gaming may be on the rise but not with real gamers. I want to play my video games on a 40" Sony 1080p TV with the sound pumping through a 1000 watt home cinema system. Thank God for Sony, Nintendo and Microsoft because these company's are keeping real gaming alive. I also don't care how cheap mobile gaming is because the reason its cheap is because its rubbish they're selling.



SanderEvers said:

Guys, please for the love of all that is good and holy in the world. STOP these doom and gloom articles.



Rapido said:

mobile gaming, not my cup of tea. Though I see a lot of new players, not being in the era of console/handheld games, prefer mobile gaming.

What gaming companies need is innovation. Unless game developers give up on the Console/handheld, then its over. But then again, there is Nintendo.



logan2419 said:

Yea this wont happen. Not everyone wants to pay a dollar or two dollars a day just to play their games. If all these game companies keep making it impossible to play games without spending money all the time then I actually think you will see a consumer backlash. Why pay all the time when you can use a 3ds and buy the game for good with no further purchasing required and no content with held from you. It just wont happen people aren't that stupid.



TheRealThanos said:

" ...and in other news: video clips are killing the radio, TV has all but taken over the newspaper and the internet is about to make books obsolete altogether... "

Today's predictions are tomorrow's nonsense, ask the Maya's...
What these so called analysts are way too much of is in the first two syllables of the word itself...



BooJoh said:

I got my first iOS device a few months ago in the form of the iPod 5th gen, and while there are some good games on there, I haven't played a single game that wouldn't be better on a dedicated handheld or console. In fact, of all the games I've played on iOS that I've also played on traditional gaming platforms, the iOS version always feels inferior. Mutant Mudds, Theatrhythm, and don't even get me started on the FPS ports. This even extends to the championing iOS title, Angry Birds, which feels far more intuitive and playable on PC IMO.



Captain_Balko said:

People like us are looking at this, thinking this will never happen. We don't really play much on tablets or smartphones because we like our handheld devices and consoles. Unfortunately, kids these days are constantly playing on phones and tablets. The only way to combat this growing epidemic is by pushing 3DS and Wii U on kids and taking away their tablets, so they develop a love for what I consider to be true gaming. Trust me. If you have children, keep the tablet out of reach, and hand them a real gaming device instead. Future generations will thank you.



SkywardLink98 said:

I hope the games on iOS get a bit better before they take over. I'd miss the whole, 60 hours-60 dollar thing consoles had going.



Jaz007 said:

He doesn't understand what a gamer is. Gamers won't exist or will be playing existing consoles and games. The scale of games is completely different on a phone and console. I have NOVA 3 on my iPhone 4 and the graphics are great for an iPhone, but if you compare them to a console game they aren't very good. The touch controls are sub-par too. $60 games will never exist on phones either so phone games need to be cheaper too which makes games on a smaller scale for them. I will never regularly stare at a phone screen for 1-2 at a time either. You will never see a game on the scale of Skyrim on a phone either. Gamers are going to keep buying consoles or cease to exist.



Dpullam said:

We'll see if these opinions hold any merit for the future of dedicated home consoles. I personally am not sure if consoles can survive the onslaught of tablet devices. I certainly hope they do though!



TheRealThanos said:

@Dpullam Maybe it's the fact that I've got 20 years on you as a guy who likes games, but for me this supposed 'onslaught of tablet devices' is only in the minds of the insecure or those that inadvertently seem to will that non-existent threat into existence, making it the well-known self fulfilling prophecy. As far as I'm concerned smart phone and/or tablet gaming is just a sub category of TRUE gaming and will not replace it until such a time that it can be at least on par with the upcoming consoles and be connected to TV as such, not like the 'Android PC' it is now.
Younger people nowadays will more than likely have more affinity with smart devices, but those are just the times. We had walkmans, they have mp3 players, it's to be expected.
Funny thing is that my 12yo nephew rather plays Minecraft on his laptop than smart phone games... (and he has a Wii)
The market may diminish, but as long as people like us, that are dedicated to the true gaming experience, live consoles will stay alive for a long, long time to come...



shredmeister said:

Will someone fill me in on what is considered a GREAT game for my iPhone? I have Angry Birds, but what else is there?



BabyLogey said:

Even if it DOES happen, I'll just get a tablet, and Nintendo's gonna keep making games even if they have to switch to mobile games.



GameLord08 said:

Before we start discussing this ever again, 90% of people in this comment section ought to try buying a mobile game that costs more than $0.99.



TheRealThanos said:

@shredmeister Depends on what you like. Dead Trigger, Infinity Blade, Need for Speed Most Wanted, Contract Killer 2, Beach Buggy Blitz, Fragger, Toki Tori, World of Goo, Great Little War Game, Cogs, Terror Dome and Blood and Glory are all reasonably good fun for a smart phone game, even though some of these games also have console versions available. I have to say that I'm not certain if all of these games are also available on iOS, since I don't have an iPhone. But in that case you could always try to finish Temple Run 1 & 2 and Riptide (a Wave Race clone) who are definitely on iOS...



RetroGBHippie92 said:

@TheRealThanos It's too bad younger people don't generally have much taste when it comes to video games. Don't forget they have traditional handheld gaming, just as we did 20 or so years ago, it's just helluva harder to get them interested in non-smartphone tech.

Personally I think that whole study is bullsh*t, how can you attest to saying all gaming will be mostly on smartphones and tablets by 2017? you know how far that is away? also the 3DS has only been out for 2 years, I think the 3DS will still be pumping out great games by then, the 3DS won't die out, the Wii U will continue I betcha. So really this research company is just pulling facts outta their a**, you do know how long console/handheld cycles are right?



OGGamer said:

The only games that play reasonably well on tablets in my opinion are shmups . They lend themselves well to touch screen controls , dodonpachi resurrection , Espgaluda and other cave shmups are a testament to that and they play exceptionally on my tablet . Shmups are a niche market though and don't represent all games .
I would go fully retro gaming in 2017 if tablet/mobile gaming took over . I just don't see people trading in gaming on their UHD 4k screens in the future for a gaming tablet or phone .



sr388survivor said:

Given how much of an issue people made about the 3ds not having a second analogue pad, I find it hard to believe that people would switch to phones and tablets unless they have a full controller built into them.



FriedSquid said:

Like it or not, this is probably going to be 90% accurate. I dunno if it will be that soon, but mobile gaming is taking up speed and Nintendo isn't going fast enough. Just because "it doesn't have Zelda" or "the controls suck" does not nullify the truth--they sell.

Now, I'm gonna go back to my infinity blade 2...



sonicfan1373 said:


The technology is actually becoming cheaper. I think that Nintendo will be able to pull off better multitasking in future systems. I think that a smart-device with traditional controls and a console like ecosystem can really benefit Nintendo in the future (although they have time, the 3DS is doing very well right now so they do not need to rush).

I do agree with what you say about privacy, but unfortunately much of that is unavoidable no matter what device you are on today.



nik1470 said:

When did I become classed as a mid-core gamer and if so why do tablets and phone games not appeal to me.



TheRealThanos said:

@CaptainSquid Like hotcakes they do. Still doesn't make the "oh no, smart devices is teh doomz for consoles" prediction true. It is just not gonna happen, PERIOD. There will just be a diminishing group of 'pure' console gamers, and then there will be those that play on both consoles and smart devices and those that play only on smart devices. I've been in tech/IT related sales and marketing for over twelve years now and I've seen the shift, but not the crash or whatever people think is coming. Analyst try to give an objective view of things to come, based on past events and predictive behavior of consumers, but definitely not always with the necessary connected and knowledgeable view of the whole picture. In this case they just take the rise of Android/iOS devices as their starting point, WITHOUT knowing what will happen when the new consoles come out. And people will still buy those in droves, I can guarantee you that much...
Everything else I already said in my previous comment still stands as well, until someone proves me wrong with cold hard facts...



bunnyking said:

I've always thought this would be inevitable. The sooner a game company makes a device that takes this into consideration the sooner they can start printing money.



YorkshireNed said:

I'm afraid it really is quite likely that console ownership is going to go the way of vinyl records, a niche for the discerning customer. The big warning sign will be when all new TVs are wirelessly connectable to smartphones. Once that happens, we'll be in a very different world when it comes to gaming.



JebbyDeringer said:

This is a actually a really good thing if true. As soon as gaming becomes less profitable more risks will be taken and better games will be made.



BetweenTheTrees said:

okay, i think i'm done laughing for now. the only people that i really see playing these games are my mom who is 50 and my girlfriend who has no real love for gaming. give me a system anyday. if this is true, looks like i won't be playing video games anymore...



BetweenTheTrees said:

but pad and phone games lack any real type of gaming. to me atleast. they are boring generic crap. but of course that's just me.



Dpullam said:

@TheRealThanos Since I have been playing video games regularly for the past 20 years I don't think my experience could be a valid issue. I also never said anything about tablet gaming being true gaming or not though perhaps that wasn't directed towards me. I am just uncertain as to every console's future as of right now since tablets are vastly outselling consoles. Nothing more, nothing less.

I do hope that consoles will be a permanent fix in homes for years to come though. I can't imagine playing games without owning a dedicated home console. I hope that consoles can stay around for a very long time!



Nestalgic said:

Let's reevaluate here for a minute and try to look outside of the echo chamber:
1. You are all here on a video game blog site because you are all really into video games.
2. How many unique users are there on this site and others like it? Maybe 1 million? 2 million?
3. How many people bought a Wii? In the first 4 years of its existence, 30 million wiis were sold. I would venture to say that anyone who bought a Wii after December 2010 would be considered a very late adopter.

So we're looking at between 1-2 million "hardcore" gamers and maybe another 56 million "regular" gamers (2 times the 28 million other wiis sold to account for PS3s and XBox360s as well). And then, assuming nobody who isn't a regular or hardcore gamer bought a PS3 or XBox, we're looking at probably an equal number of casual gamers who bought a Wii for Wii Sports type of games.

So right there you're looking at a 50/50 split. But wait. What about all the people that didn't buy a console but do play games on their phone or tablet? Anyone and everyone between the ages of 6 and 106 are potential buyers of games on those devices. Looking just at the industrial world and wealthy of the developing world:

We're looking at 60 million potential serious or hardcore gamers versus nearly 3 billion potential casual gamers.

Now ask yourself which market you'd rather be in if you were the one selling games. Even if the hardcore gamers are paying $60 a game and the casual gamers are paying $3 a game, that's still not even close when you consider that the casual gamers outnumber you 50 to 1.

Nobody is saying there won't be consoles any more. It's just that they are going to take a back seat. I imagine that means we will see heavy price hikes to traditional console games over the next generation.



AtomicToaster said:

And heavy price hikes will likely kill consoles if that happens. There's a good chance mobiles and other open platforms will continue to take up the vast majority of the market share. The only thing is sometimes sales are actually better on consoles for a game despite the huge install base of phones. That was the same story with the Wii vs. the 360 and PS3 so it'll be interesting to see how things go.



Freelance said:

I'm sorry, but I hate phones. I don't have a phone, or a tablet. I will always choose a handheld over phones/tablets since I have absolutely no use for a phone and a tablet.

If the time comes when handhelds and consoles become extinct (although I highly doubt that), then I'll just stick to the PC for my gaming needs.



xerox said:

yeah but dont forget if nintendo just want they can make the next generation of handheld for example Nintendo HDS wich can be used also as a smartphone and it should have a hd output so you could link it with your Tv , you just have to buy the controllers to play it on your tv if not you can have it with you and play anywhere you like , it shoul be like it can be divided in 2 pices one like a smartphone and than when you want to play all you need to do is just to unite the 2 pices and play with thee dedicated buttons but it should have stuning specs this would be a gamechanger for nintendo just my idea



Bulbousaur said:

Taken directly from their homepage:
"Juniper Research specialises in the identification and appraisal of high growth opportunities across the mobile telecoms, content, and applications sectors."

Information is automatically biased. Evidence is invalid. Come back with a completely independent research team.



zenarium said:

I have a tegra 3 tablet and a 3DS. I have many games on my tablet and some are really great and I play them a lot. I also have a 3DS and play on it a lot. I like both systems and I will always play on both.



Tuturoopa said:

Tablet games are awful! Theyre pretty much just one minigame, I doubt it will be main thing for actual gamers



blondeandy said:

The problem i have with this that no one seems to raise is as follows:
Phone: Device i need to have powered up at all times and i do everything to conserve battery.
Handheld/Mp3 player: Device i run down until it's out of charge.

I struggle to keep battery in my phone as it is without spending hours gaming on it when travelling to work and back. Getting a little tired of this idea of your phone replacing every device you ever had. Do TV shows get filmed on phones? No. Do photographers take their photos with phones? No.

I still see a market for machines specifically for games. Nothing wrong with making something that is dedicated to just one things. This is why i hope nintendo are around for sometime, they aren't trying to get their sticky fingers in to all media, they just want to make good games!



kyuubikid213 said:

No. I don't care, no matter what, no true gamer would be satisfied with only iOS or Android games.

There is a certain something missing when it comes to those games versus a handheld game or console game. That's my opinion anyway. I've played some of the best iOS games, but nothing satisfies me more than playing on the Wii U or 3DS.



TheRealThanos said:

@Dpullam You're right; the true gamer part wasn't directed at you, nor at anyone else here. It's just a distinction I made to identify console gamers vs smart device gamers to aid my argument, so I hope you didn't take offense.
I never aim to upset or anger any NL visitor, but I do like facts (and flaunting my knowledge, to be truthful). On many occasions I do find that age difference is a factor, and definitely not a minor one. And I've been gaming for a good 10 years longer than you. It would be the same as if someone of, say 12 years old claims he could make the same distinctions as you could, which would be impossible. I am 43 years old and actively and consciously experienced everything from the Colecovision and Atari2600 up till now, so yeah that means something and also gives you a broader perspective than people that started gaming in the 16 bit era or maybe knowingly witnessed the transfer from the 8 bit era to 16 bit, but even though you could have bought an 8 bit system later on, you never witnessed the whole 'entrance to exit' period when it happened, because you simply weren't born yet in 1986. Not to belittle you or anything, just stating facts. That may come across as cold, arrogant or even asinine, but it is not intended as such, just so you know. And I share your hope for consoles, although I'm somewhat more optimistic because I think that I won't be there anymore, or at least too old to notice the supposed 'final demise' of dedicated game consoles. Especially Nintendo's handhelds will probably last me a lifetime, because they will more than likely continue to make those, or maybe even a hybrid to compete with smart devices.

@Bulby Exactly, nail on the head and so on. I didn't even go so far as to check their site as you did, but in my line of work I have to deal with these kind of people on a regular basis, so that's why I could make this statement in a previous comment:

"Analyst try to give an objective view of things to come, based on past events and predictive behavior of consumers, but definitely not always with the necessary connected and knowledgeable view of the whole picture. In this case they just take the rise of Android/iOS devices as their starting point, WITHOUT knowing what will happen when the new consoles come out. And people will still buy those in droves, I can guarantee you that much..."



FineLerv said:

Touch screen combined with analogue sticks and buttons is my preferred controller. Touch screen by itself is severely limited, but when integrated with a traditional controller it opens up possibilities.



NESguy94 said:

No, tablet games suck. The controls are just awful even if you do have a decent game. This really shows that Nintendo needs to step up their game.



Dpullam said:

@TheRealThanos That is understandable so there is no harm done. I started on the NES so I really don't know very much about the Atari era. I just hope the memories of playing a home console won't become a bygone era because unlike you, I probably will be around to see the demise of consoles if it happens. I surely hope it doesn't though!



TheRealThanos said:

@Dpullam I think that as the group of traditional console gamers diminishes, it will just become niche, like somebody else already stated. But as far as bygone memories go I only have to reach into the closet to grab one of my consoles, so I can revisit the 'good old days' whenever I want to... ;D



DaemonSword said:

FIRST: A pox on the houses of parents who buy their kids $500 Ipads. Good F'N GRIEF. Really, parents?!?! SECOND: most tablet games suck, and having no physical controls just adds to the lame experience. And then there's the outrageous prices on useless DLC, to which most of those games are way overdependent on.



XCWarrior said:

This is great news folks. us hardcore gamers will only see quality games on the good systems, and phones and tablets can get all the Imagine games, Cut the Rope and other crap.



Meaty-cheeky said:

I feel the same way, there is just a certain quality in games and in gameplay on a dedicated gaming consoles like the Nintendo 3DS that cell phones or tablets just can not ever replace.



Oceanous said:

I have an Iphone 5 and I do a lot with it in my every day life BUT except playing games. I've tried it and it's just not the same.

Yes, it's true that it's easy to download games/apps onto your smart phones and yes it's true that most of games are only a dollar or two but those games are not AAA qualities. You get what you paid for... Can you play Luigi's Mansion on your phone? No. Can you play Monster Hunter on your phone? No. Unless Nintendo start porting their own games to mobile devices, I don't think mobile devices will take over. And I know Nintendo is not that stupid to port their own games to mobile devices.



ledreppe said:

The report says the 3DS lacks the same cellular connectivity of a phone, but not if you turn on wifi hotsopt on your smartphone, Then the 3DS has mobile connectivity. i was able to download a full game from the eShop doing this.

I have an iPhone 5, I tried a couple of games on it and I did not like the experience atall, will always play traditional handhelds for mobile gaming even if I have to pay increased game prices to support a niche market.

Sorry but smartphones and tablets will never replace traditional home consoles and handhelds, and any analyst who thinks so is dumb. I don't know what young kids see in tablets and smartphone gaming, it's not the same experience as traditional consoles, and that is the experience I'm after, not some lite on content and features 69p iOS or android game.



banacheck said:

The analyst's where right about 3D TV's taking over HD TV's, look at where 3D TV's are now, and thay are not in everyones home.



softserve said:

I ordered an Ouya and am kind of amazed the original study even mentioned it. Even mentioning it bucks their entire point. It isn't "mobile based". It's "Android based". Absolutely nothing about it is any more portable than a Wii or Wii U.

I'm not sure that's making the point they want.



andrea987 said:

So people nowadays likes to play on the go, and that's why they'll buy...the Ouya console?! Yeah, that makes sense...



RetroGBHippie92 said:

I hate analysts comparing apples and oranges, seriously how can you compare a dedicated handheld to a smartphone in terms of gaming? also how can you compare a gaming device to a phone anyway? the average smartphone gamer doesn't know what a full length game is like and when they ask for Nintendo to port their games over, they literally have no clue whatsoever when they start talking about the prospect. Nintendo will never officially support smartphones, it doesn't fit their strategy and imagine being asked to buy a phone just to play the next mario, zelda, metroid or fire emblem, cause that's what they would tell us if they were in the smartphone business, yep "upgrade to iPhone 5,5s, 6, 7 Window 8 mobile, yaddah yaddah yaddah...."



Dpullam said:

@TheRealThanos I guess that is one way to look at it! I'd rather have new fond memories being created for future home consoles until I can't either move my hands or have decent vision. I think I'm getting ahead of myself though. I am fully confident consoles will be around for a long time. The consoles will evolve with the gamers in mind as recent evidence I have seen has shown. It will take more than tablets to kill console gaming.



TySoN_F said:

Console games in 1997 will probably still be better than "Mobile" games in 2017. But, in a way the numbers don't really compare since Smartphones and etc. are used for more than gaming. :/ People don't buy tablets to game. That's just a bonus to them. Or a detractor for kids as how I see it used. xD



Squiggle55 said:

For gamers? Yeah right. Maybe they should have said "the primary device on which games are played". That could easily be accurate. But it's not "gamers" migrating.

And what they said about Ouya makes zero sense.



gundam00 said:


The fact that they mentioned the Ouya console makes me question this report.

I thought the same thing. If there's room in the gaming market for Ouya to find success, I'm sure there's room for Nintendo.



ecco6t9 said:

I do not like the idea of an all in one device usually it consists of bits and pieces that are good enough instead of "top of the line".



CasuallyDressed said:

Even as a very light user (mainly texts, occasional Twitter/Facebook checks) my phone's battery barely makes it through the day, nevermind playing resource hungry games on it.

Wake me up when someone figures out how to make a phone with the graphical fidelity of the PS Vita, an OLED screen, physical buttons and sticks, an operating system that's functional both as a phone and a games console and a battery life of over 12 hours, all in a form factor that's usable as a phone without looking dorky.

Maybe then I'll be interested. Maybe. And still probably not.



retro_player_22 said:

Mobile games are meant for play to kill times, for a more in-dept gaming experience consoles and handhelds are the way to go.



LonDonE said:

@duffmmann agreed, but i dont think its even about buttons only, its also about the fact that the screen size is allot smaller, an so you cant get fully immersed into the game, like u would when playing on a big hdtv, whats the point in a aaa game when allot of the fine details are missed on the big screen, i for one will never play core games on a mobile phone, maybe casual games on the bus or tube, but not a proper game, its just no where near the same experience! the day consoles stop existing, i will just carry on playing my great games on my pc hooked up to my hdtv in big picture mode, phone gaming is just a fad, trust me, they will never replace a dedicated games device like a console!



Zombie_Barioth said:

@HeatBombastic Just out of curiosity, do you watch ReviewTechUSA?
I actually agree with you for the most part, I can see mobile devices becoming an all in one device in the future as you said, but I just don't think it'll kill tradtional gaming. I believe that console and PC gaming will just revert to an enthusiast market, and in the case of home consoles the term "console" will simply refer to your dedicated home entertainment device.

Battery life is also a big concern, unless battery technology improves substancially in the next 4-5 years mobile devices aren't going to be a viable replacement for dedicated gaming devices while also serving as your phone, music player, and everything else. All those functions will also constantly get in the way of each other if your phone is your primary device for everything, at which point you might as well use a dedicated device and let your phone be a phone.



StarDust4Ever said:

Show me a tablet with "A"/"B" buttons and a D-pad, and I'll tell you to


So far, Apple does not get it. As for Wii-U and 3DS xL, cha-ching!



Pod said:

Hardly a surprise.

Smartphones are becoming the television of gaming, while consoles might be relegated to a movie theater role.

That's the most accurate analogy I got at the time.



LindsayPez said:

I hate smartphone games and I hate people who call themselves "gamers" just because they play iPhone games. Proclamations like this make me cranky!



Dreamcaster-X said:

Yeah, these "predictions" kill me!! LOL!!! Blu-ray was supposed to be dead and everything was supposed to be downloads only now too....ummmmm yeeeaaaahh about that....



ollietaro said:

The Nintendo Wii U and 3DS I predict will be Nintendo's last-ever consoles. Afterwards, they may release a Nintendo phone or develop Nintendo hardware for utilization in smartphones when phones will finally have the tech to deliver home console-quality games. We'll be downloading Mario and Zelda from the "N Store" and play them waiting in line for starbucks and in waiting rooms.

It's like when the mp3 player and cell phone merged. It will soon no longer be necessary to own two separate systems. You'll be able to do it all on your phone. Smart TVs will all be outfitted with gaming tech and you'll be able to order and play all future playstation, xbox, and Nintendo games from the same device.



RetroGBHippie92 said:

@ollietaro I don't want an all-in-one device, in fact i'm not gonna support smartphones in general, i'll stick to the standard, old fashioned keypad. Touch screens are generally terrible, talking on a smartphone is ok, but texting is a horrible business with some phones.
Anyway, speak for yourself, not everyone wants smartphones to be the only source of video games, I for one don't consider smartphone games "video games", that's my opinion, but i'm sure i'm not the only one who thinks that.



Ralizah said:

Oh please. This is silly. Hobbyist gamers, by and large, are not going to be tempted away from dedicated gaming machines with high quality software because they can play Angry Birds or Cut the Rope on a touch-screen device. Those are the types of games people typically play on those devices because trying to play anything with virtual buttons is a pain.

I think it is great that the casuals are all going the smartphone/tablet route. Now Nintendo can't make a profit pandering to them by flooding the market with casual shovelware.



ollietaro said:

@RetroGBHippie92 Oh totally. I agree. In future, I will play Nintendo games on whatever device they're on. I love my 3DS XL a lot but there's no point releasing new hardware for a hardcore audience only. The casual gamers that made the Wii successful are just using their phones now.

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