More Than Half of Mobile Device Owners Use Them to Play Games

May 16, 2013 No Comments by

WHITING, Ind., May 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Mobile devices are practical for many reasons, and with thousands of game options available, they’re a popular source of entertainment. A new survey reveals that more than half (51 percent) of mobile device owners ever play games (e.g. Angry Birds, Words with Friends, Candy Crush Saga, etc…) on their devices. This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of from May 2nd – 6th, 2013, among 2,058 U.S. adults ages 18 and older.

Getting hooked on mobile game apps can be a time suck. When it comes to how often mobile device gamers report they are playing games, the survey revealed the following:

  • Play games more than once a day – 11 percent
  • Play games at least once a day – 21 percent
  • Play games at least once a week – 41 percent
  • Once a month or less – 10 percent

Comparing genders, men are more likely to play games on their mobile devices than women, at 54 percent and 48 percent, respectively. Across specific devices, tablet owners (75 percent) are more likely to play games on their devices than than smartphone owners (70 percent) and e-reader owners (62 percent).

Game playing on the go, while convenient, can come with a price. In fact, more than four-in-ten (45 percent) mobile game-playing U.S. adults have downloaded a paid game app on their mobile device. Tablet owners are significantly more likely to have done this than smartphone owners, at 55 percent and 46 percent, respectively.

Even though game apps can be relatively inexpensive, they can add up quickly. In the past 12 months, U.S. adults who’ve ever paid to download a game on their mobile device have spent the following:

  • $1 – $10 – 61 percent
  • $11- $ 20 – 15 percent
  • $21 – $50 – 9 percent
  • More than $50 – 11 percent

“App purchases, even though they’re often low priced, should be factored into an overall entertainment budget,” said Jackie Warrick, senior savings adviser at “It can be easy to hit the purchase button for an app, or for in-app features, without realizing how much you’re spending. Make sure to track your purchases and keep an eye on any extras.”

Game app extras are an additional way mobile game players can spend money easily. Of those who ever play games on their mobile devices, 29 percent report they have completed an “in-app’ purchase (e.g. bought credits to advance a level, paid money for “lives” or purchased additional features). One-quarter (25 percent) have done this 1-10 times, while 5 percent have done it more than ten times.

App purchases can be tricky to monitor when kids get a hold of mobile devices. Of those U.S. adults who own a mobile device and have children under the age of 18, 12 percent say their child(ren) has/have purchased a game app by mistake, while 10 percent say their child(ren) has/have done it intentionally, without their permission. Seven percent say their child(ren) has/have made an in-app purchase intentionally, without their permission while 7 percent say their child(ren) has/have made an in-app purchase by mistake.


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