Top 4 Reasons Why Games and Discovery Go Together (and an Easter Egg Reason too!)

Apr 18, 2023
By: Jean Ortiz-Luis

With so many apps available to smartphone users, it can be challenging to stand out. Most developers rely heavily on advertising in their user acquisition strategy. But with consumers being inundated with mobile ads, UA managers need to find other ways to find new players.

One method apps can use to gain consumer attention is On-Device Discovery. It allows apps to be available on the device until the consumer is ready to use them. Preloads, setup wizards, and notifications can put an app in the prime position for mobile users to discover them. Both Apple and Google have hundreds of thousands of games available for every type of player. Here are the top four reasons mobile gamers and discovery UA are a perfect fit:

1. Everyone plays games.

According to Newzoo, over 2.5 billion people around the world play games on mobile. The games industry analytics provider attributes this growth to the improved mobile internet infrastructure and more affordable smartphones across all specs. In the U.S. alone, there are 203 million mobile gamers, and about 56% of them play more than 10 times a week.

2. Games are downloaded way more than other app categories.

Although app downloads have slowed since the height of the pandemic, games still dominate the charts. Sensor Tower reported that games were responsible for almost three times as many installs as the No. 2 Category, Utilities, in Q4 2022. Additionally, 39% of apps downloaded in 2022 were games.

3. The primary usage of games is for passing time and entertainment.

In a study by IDC and LoopMe, a majority of survey respondents from select countries (Brazil, Germany, Japan, Singapore, the U.K., and the U.S.) said their primary motivation for playing mobile games was just killing time or entertainment. In fact, 31% of respondents from the U.S. said they play to pass the time. Because mobile games are primarily used at times of boredom, their users are open to discovering new titles for those times they want to be entertained.

4. Games are the most interchangeable of all apps.

According to, on average, each mobile device in the U.S. has eight games installed on it, and most people are playing roughly two to five of them per month. Unlike most other categories, one app is not enough for most mobile gamers. Different games can serve different purposes. For a five-minute break, a player may open up a hypercasual game, while an hour-break might be better suited to an RPG or strategy game. Other app categories are not as interchangeable because they are used for utility. If your rideshare app is successful at getting you to your destination, do you need 3 or 4 of those apps? Probably not. But if the main purpose of an app is to entertain you, the user is likely to be on the lookout for other apps to keep them occupied and challenged.

It’s clear that games are apt for discovery UA, but it doesn’t hurt to share yet another reason why they go together. Mobile games make money! The mobile game market is expected to reach $284.4 billion by the end of 2030 with 49% of mobile gamers spending money on mobile games. Additionally, 76% of U.S. mobile gamers prefer opt-in rewarded video ads over interstitial ads. Mobile games have the ability to reach audiences of all types around the world and can bring in huge revenue.

With the popularity of mobile gaming and the dominance of games in app downloads, mobile gamers are a prime target for discovery UA. And with the mobile gaming market projected to continue to grow and generate significant revenue, it’s clear that discovery UA is an area worth exploring for app developers looking to stand out in a crowded market.

By Jean Ortiz-Luis
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