A new report from app testing firm Swrve finds that a very small minority of players are responsible for the bulk of freemium and in-app purchases in free mobile games. Only 2.3 percent of players ever make any purchases at all, and 0.23 percent of users generate two-thirds of free game revenue.
Interestingly, the number of people spending money on mobile games has increased slightly: it was only 1.5 percent in last year's survey. There was also a notable increase in the number of people making purchases between $11 and $20; this size sale now generates 39 percent of revenue, up from 22 percent in 2014.
The takeaway for the mobile development industry is that it's more important than ever to court that very small group of "whales" who will spend more than $10 on a free game.