Tablet gamers are a little less mobile than smartphone gamers, and they tend to play in the home more and for longer periods of time. They also tend to purchase apps more and are made up of so-called "midcore" gamers, versus the hardcore console players or the more casual smartphone gamers.
Will Wright, the man behind multiscreen franchises such as "SimCity," "The Sims" and "Spore," sees new opportunities for game developers as more gamers log into virtual worlds from multiple access points.
"It used to be games were things that were experienced sitting, or more recently with motion controls moving, in front of a TV screen," said Wright, president of The Stupid Fun Club. "Then we saw bite-sized mobile games enter the picture. Now it's about how can we build interactive experiences that not only use these different devices, but take advantage of new technology like augmented reality to further blend the game world with the real world."
With Nintendo's Wii U launching this fall with a GamePad tablet to expand the game-play experience beyond the central TV screen, the next generation of consoles from Microsoft and Sony are expected to further embrace this multiscreen approach.
"I see tablets as very complementary to the next generation of consoles," said Bartel. "While we believe consoles will still dominate the living room, tablets offer gamers the ability to interact with and expand the console experience. The portability factor of tablets is also extremely appealing to gamers, allowing them to extend their TV experience outside their living rooms through the cloud."
As seen last week at E3, the future of gaming is multiscreen. And the experiences available on devices are quickly evolving to equal current generation console offerings.
When you factor in cloud-based gaming services, console games are already available everywhere today's gamer is. And that's changing every aspect of the game industry for the better.