Decoding Gamers - It's Social

Highlights from the State of The American Mom report were released just last week. Not a lot of surprises, but the report did contain one shift in behavior that we’ve been seeing for awhile and, honestly, I just didn’t understand. 

As expected, and as we have seen in other reports, moms own smartphones - upwards of 60%, per this latest report and growing quickly. What they do with smartphones may come as some surprise though as two-thirds of moms play games on them. We’ve hearing about this girl gamer phenomenon for some time now, both online and on consoles … now it’s firmly entrenched on the smartphone.

And, seriously, I just never really understood the attraction, even though I’ve been known to indulge in a game of Angry Birds or Tetris in spare moment while waiting in line at the grocery store (which, incidentally, is an exceeding popular place for gaming.)I never quite understood why this was a trend – why so many moms played games on their smartphone.

That is until I discovered “Words With Friends.” Then the light bulb went on. 

Scouring report after report on moms and gaming, I kept coming across the word “with” – with family, with children, with friends. It wasn’t just I who enjoyed interacting with people I already know on my smartphone. “Words with Friends” and similar games take the social-ability of Facebook one step further … out of the realm of conversation and into the world of interaction. 

Smartphone games – quick puzzles to solve in the pediatrician’s waiting room -- are part of the answer to why so many moms play games. Another way to connect with friends and family is the second. Whether it’s challenging her 9-year-old to see who can score the most points or playing word games with the sister 500 miles away, smartphone games let mom stay more than connected. They let mom interact.

That interaction with people she knows is the key to understanding social games for moms.  Let the games begin!

Tags: gaming, mobile, moms
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