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Mobile developers and publishers are about to get another option for tracking information and trends on mobile.

The NPD Group, a market research and intelligence firm that already provides a breakdown of physical game sales at U.S. retailers, is announcing today that it is expanding the data it provides about mobile gaming. NPD says it will track both game sales as well as in-app purchases in the U.S. to provide creators with a better view of where people are spending their money in the mobile gaming market, which Newzoo predicts could reach $30 billion this year.

The analysis firm says this will provide data to help developers and publishers understand how people behave on mobile. And it’s another sign of how gaming is changing to include more than just home-based consoles.

“Mobile is the third largest gaming category in the U.S., and grew in excess of 20 percent over the past year,” NPD president of global games David McQuillan said. “We believe that information that allows gaming companies to fully capitalize on this explosive growth is paramount; this sentiment has been echoed by video game software publishers and developers who agree that there would be significant benefit in NPD’s new service offering that covers full games as well as in-app game purchases.”


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In the fourth quarter of last year, NPD tracked 325,000 different transactions and in 1,100 different games. Based on that sample size, the average number of items purchased per paying gamer was seven. And they spent an average of $48 through that three-month period.

The data also reveals that the top games share many of the top spending players. If people spent money in Candy Crush Saga, they often also spent money in Clash of Clans, Farm Heroes Saga, Boom Beach, Cookie Jam, and Kim Kardashian: Hollywood.

NPD has spent the last several years putting this tracking system in place, and it has data that goes back to October 2012. So it claims that it can provide the type of insight that developers and publishers crave.

“The NPD Group has been covering the games space for decades,” said McQuillan. “This newest addition to our product portfolio is just a natural extension of our services and skills.”

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