While mobile gaming has exploded over the last few years, current smartphone and tablet hardware could never compete with the power of modern game consoles. But that could all change in just a few years, according to one Electronic Arts executive.
“What gets us the most excited is the power, the computing power, of mobile devices and the speed at which that’s growing,” EA CFO Blake Jorgensen said at the 2015 Technology, Internet & Media Conference. According to Jorgensen, better mobile technology would enable tablets and phones to match or even exceed console performance.
“What that might mean is that a tablet, three or four years from now, has more power than what a typical console has. And that will open up a whole new set of people to console-style games that are much more immersive, much deeper, much more character-driven than simply a static mobile game that you might play for a small burst of time while you’re waiting for the bus.”
EA is one of the biggest publishers in console gaming, with several massive franchises such as Madden NFL and FIFA, as well as several popular cross-platform games such as Battlefield and Dragon Age. The company has recently made a push into mobile gaming, and during its Q3 earnings call last month, the company boasted an estimated 160 million monthly active users for EA mobile games.
“We’re looking for ways that we can essentially blend those two models to have a more immersive but movable game experience,” Jorgensen said. “Could be in your living room, could be on the bus, or it could be in a friend’s house. Much more portable than it is today. And that for us is a huge opportunity.”
One of the biggest draws of mobile games for publishers is their mass appeal and ability to attract consumers who do not fit the usual definition of a gamer. Mobile games have grown so popular that three games recently ran multi-million dollar advertisements during the Super Bowl.
One mobile game ad starring Liam Neeson even became the most viewed Super Bowl ad on YouTube.