Smartphones are driving the mobile games market, led by the iPhone. ComScore/M:Metrics reports that the number of mobile game downloaders grew 17 percent between Nov 2007 and Nov 2008, however non-smartphone gaming dipped 14 percent during that period. In Nov 2007 none of the top 10 handsets used to download a game was a smartphone, whereas a year later 6 out of the top 10 handsets used to download games were smartphones reports RCR Wireless.
Of course, part of this can be put down to the fact that people who buy mobile games are more likely to get a high-end handset, but a part of it has to be the better experience on smartphones. A great deal can also be put down to the hype surrounding the iPhone which showed people what is possible on mobiles beyond voice and text calls, and the iPhone itself — with its App Store ecosystem — is a great marketplace, accounting for 14 percent of all people who downloaded a game, despite the iPhone only having a 1.1 percent marketshare worldwide. Handango notes that games accounted for 19 percent “of top category sales” last year, compared to 11 percent the previous year. Half of the top 10 phones used to download content from Handango were Blackberries.