Online gaming has experienced tremendous growth in Africa in the past few years. A 2017 study by KPMG revealed that mobile gaming had penetrated 35 out of 52 African countries, and the continent makes $18 billion from online gaming every year.
Leading sportsbooks and online casinos, like GClub, offer a variety of online games to Africa-based enthusiasts. It is growing popular on the continent, as it is one of the few casinos that offer hundreds of video slot games and progressive jackpot slots in one place.
Factors Influencing Online Gaming Growth in Africa
Many factors contribute to the drastic growth of online gaming in Africa, including improved banking infrastructure, rapid internet penetration, and local innovations.
Analysts point out that payment solutions play an integral role in how online gaming has taken root in Africa. Banks across the continent are developing apps and wallets to streamline online payments. The ease of expenditure through mobile technology is also a huge factor in the development of these entertainment platforms.
The rapid penetration of the internet in the continent has also contributed significantly to the phenomenal expansion of online gaming in Africa. Statistics show that at least 31% of the African population now has access to the internet, mostly used to access mobile data.
Local service providers are developing innovative solutions to promote online gaming. Safaricom Kenya recently launched an online gaming competition through its Games Lounge service.
Customers of the Tanzania-based Tigo Games have an option to subscribe to a flexible VIP Games Club and download unlimited games for the duration of their subscription (daily, weekly, or monthly).
About 70% of the gaming population comprises tech-savvy youth, so the trend is set to continue.
Africa also has a friendly legal landscape for online gaming. While it is officially illegal in a handful of African countries, most have grey areas in the regulations that allow online gaming to continue in some form or another.
Countries that regulate online gaming include South Africa, Kenya, Ghana, Nigeria, Angola, Botswana, and the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Most Popular Online Games in Africa
While the continent has a vast range of online game options, only a few enjoy notable popularity:
- Card games have always been popular in the African entertainment scene. The convenience that comes with playing card games on your PC or mobile phone has since popularised the online version. Benefits, like poker bonuses that allow players to start for free, also contribute to the appeal.
- FIFA by EA Sports is among the most popular online games in Africa, thanks to the continent’s fanatical football fans. The burgeoning Esports tournaments in countries like South Africa also contribute to FIFA’s popularity.
- Africa’s Legends by Leti Arts capitalizes on culture and folklore from various African communities to deliver a relatable experience to players. It’s unique, and people are drawn to the mysterious façade.
Online Gaming in Africa
While it faces a few challenges from connectivity to coverage, online gaming is flourishing in Africa. An increasing number of enthusiasts are gaining access to affordable internet, smartphones, and reliable banking infrastructure, and gaming is following the trend.