A $150 billion opportunity in cloud gaming exists for 5G network providers, according to new research by Ribbon Communications, as with their ability to support high quality mobile video experiences with low latency, 5G networks are the ideal medium for the high demands placed by gaming.
The report, which surveyed more than 5,000 “ardent gamers” revealed that they would be willing to spend more for superior connectivity and lower latency. By the same logic, revenue-generating opportunities could also exist in live sport, which has a similar low tolerance to quality issues as that of gaming.
Commenting on the findings, Patrick Joggerst, chief marketing officer and EVP, business development, at Ribbon, said: “5G native networks leverage advanced technologies including network slicing to offer deterministic performance, high speed and strict service guarantees. These capabilities will help usher in new business and use cases for carriers to capitalise on. The findings of this study, which will be reviewed at our upcoming 5G Perspectives event, prove that cloud gaming, combined with 5G, is a gainful area for carriers to address.”
The independent study surveyed more than 5,000 gamers across five countries who reported playing at least three hours per day prior to the Covid-19 pandemic. The results show they are aware of the arrival of 5G, recognise its capabilities, and are willing to pay more for the upgraded experience it promises to deliver.
Ribbon's survey showed that almost two-thirds of the sample (58%) already pay a premium to their provider to enjoy the best gaming experience possible while 79% would consider replacing their home broadband and mobile connectivity with 5G for a better gaming experience. Virtually all people (95%) would pay more for this improved experience, with 60% willing to pay 50% more (or $126 per month compared with the current monthly average of $84). In addition, 58% would switch connectivity provider as soon as they could if a competitor offered a high-quality service with a new 5G subscription.
Lynnette Luna, principal analyst at GlobalData, added: “Cloud gaming presents an important and lucrative opportunity for carriers who embrace 5G and deliver the improved service experience gamers crave. The rapid shift to mobile and cloud-based game delivery, combined with the higher data speeds and reduced latency 5G offers, create a better user experience for gamers and a revenue-rich ecosystem that carriers shouldn’t ignore.”
In addition to the $150 billion 5G connectivity opportunity, carriers may derive additional revenue by forming partnerships with gaming content providers to sell subscriptions to cloud services and bundled packages.