Kids under 13 spend an average of 2 hours a day playing mobile games

If you consider yourself an average mobile gamer, you’re likely spending up to 120 minutes a day tapping on a screen to have fun. That figure comes from the NPD Group, which released the results of a survey and found the amount of time people spend gaming on a mobile device is up 57 percent from just two years ago.

NPD conducted the survey between November 24 and December 5, 2014, comprised of responses from 5,566 individuals ages 2 and older. Note: NPD says “For respondents under age 18, a parental surrogate was asked to have the child complete the survey with the parent’s assistance, if necessary. For very young children, the parent answered on behalf of the child. The results were weighed to be representative of the U.S. population age 2 and older.”


The gamers with the most time spent playing fell into the 2- to 12-year-old age group, indicating that some parents are setting the young ones up on a phone or tablet with various games throughout the day. This demographic is a cash cow too, accounting for second-highest age group when it comes to spending money on games and in-app purchases. I’m betting not all of those purchases are done with full understanding of money as a concept, though. Only gamers aged 30 to 44 spend more; hopefully they know what they’re doing when they buy something.

Most of the survey participants also game on other devices such as traditional consoles such as the Xbox and Sony PlayStation. NPD says one in five people in the survey said they’re a mobile-only gamer.

Two hours a day sounds like a lot of time to be gaming on a mobile device. It is, but it shouldn’t be that surprising for two reasons. For one thing, tablets and phones on our person or readily available make it easy to fire up a game at any time. And many games are designed to be played in small chunks of time.

I probably spend a good hour a day, if not more, playing World Series of Poker, for example. That time is spread out over multiple sessions during my waking hours, though, and it adds up quickly. Now if you’ll excuse me, I have some pocket Aces to attend to and I need to get my kids outside for some old-school playtime.