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New Downloads Stable, Sessions Rise as Mobile Gamers Stay Home

Posted Apr 10, 2020

The recent stay-at-home orders during the COVID-19 pandemic have caused huge boosts in mobile usage. Across the globe, people are spending more time on their smartphones and specifically, on mobile games. In the past few weeks, game categories like Word, Trivia, and Casual have seen strong numbers in downloads and sessions. With Apptopia’s data, we are tracking the success of mobile gaming categories that user acquisition marketers should pay attention to.

Word Games
Until March 7, word games’ downloads and sessions had been flat or slightly decreasing. As stated in a previous post, numbers started increasing after this low point and continued until March 18. Updated data indicates that both downloads and sessions continued to rise to new heights through the first week of April.

The upward trend can be seen in Easybrain’s Word Search – Crossword Game. The title has seen steady growth in downloads since March 17. The game’s audience skews slightly toward females (58%) and the average player is from Gen X. Word games have a low barrier to entry for players of this generation as they are similar to the older versions they are used to and the apps are easy to learn.

Casual Games
Casual games continue to be an exciting category to watch because of its strong performance and many opportunities for advertisers. Downloads for this category had a high jump on March 10 and continued to rise for a few days. Although these numbers started to decline, downloads started rising and have been on the incline for weeks. Sessions have been slowly decreasing but are still high in comparison to most categories. 

Hypermarket 3D from Suji Games is a prime example of this category’s favorable results.  From March 24 – 29, the title saw growth in downloads. After a few days of decline, Hypermarket 3D had a surge in downloads growing over 50% in a day, totaling 105,210 downloads on April 5.

Trivia Games
With trivia games, users are looking to not only pass the time but to challenge themselves on a regular basis. Since the beginning of March, downloads for this category have been in decline. In contrast, sessions made a significant jump on March 1 and have remained strong and steady for the rest of the month. Users have already downloaded the titles they want but are finding more time to play their favorite games on a more frequent basis.

Additional Highlights
Music games had been steadily declining in sessions during March but he started to pick after March 26 and are on an upward trend. Despite those trends, downloads continued to stay strong throughout March and the beginning of April. Puzzle games have seen similar trajectories with sessions decreasing and downloads staying steady. Sessions can be expected to increase for both of these categories as users discover titles to download and enjoy.

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