The Bigger iPhone’s Impact on Mobile Gaming

Launched in September last year, the iPhone6 and the iPhone6 Plus meant a huge leap for Apple. It signalled the company’s departure from a relatively smaller form factor smartphone design to new territory that used to be dominated by the Android camp.


Now, with a bigger screen (among other marquee features) come a number of advantages to the end user. Reviewers the world over raved the new iPhones’ advantages when it comes to media consumption, to reading e-books and articles on your mobile device, and maybe more importantly, on mobile gaming.

Recent articles on CNET (Scott Stein) and Forbes (Erik Kain) point out the potential of the new iPhones to be your go-to mobile gaming machine. With a new 64-bit A8 processor, a new graphics processing API called Metal, and a significantly bigger screen (4.7-inch, 1134×750 display for the iPhone6 and 5.5-inch, 1920×1080 for the iPhone6 Plus), the two writers argue that now, more than ever, Apple is in a position to regain its lead in mobile gaming.

Yes, the introduction of two new screen resolutions will mean more work for game developers. And yes, they will need more time to optimize existing game titles for the new iPhones. But afterwards, rewards will start to come in, especially when games start to utilize the added screen real estate. As Rob Enderle of Enderle Group notes, “Bigger is better. The problem is we got a small-screen phone and a lot of stuff we do works better on the bigger screen.”

Of course, these changes could also mean more interesting, more complex, and overall better games for the iPhone platform. With the new devices also coming equipped with the M8 coprocessor for integrated motion processing, games that leverage on innovative motion controls may also be expected in the foreseeable future.

This early, the impact of the bigger iPhones may already be quantified from stats floating around the industry. The global mobile gaming market, said worth $25 billion today, is projected by the experts in App Annie, the popular industry-tracking firm, to reach as much as $100 billion in revenue by 2017. Spending on mobile casino games like the Mansion Casino for iOS was also estimated to have increased by 55% from November 2013 to November 2014. In the US, a recent research by eMarketer also points out that revenue from mobile game downloads and in-game purchases are projected to increase by 16.5% this year.

Where is the iPhone6 and iPhone6 Plus in this stats story? Simple. 6 months in, the Cupertino company has sold 74.5 million units of the two new devices in last year’s fourth quarter, en route to a record $76.4 billion quarterly revenue record.