Over a decade ago, I said that killing time is the killer application on mobile. Short-form video, gaming, and scrolling feeds have all ridden the mobile wave.
The move by TikTok into gaming is interesting because TikTok is not pushing hard on the TV front. Notable given how others have sought to win more video ad dollars by sending a message to marketers that viewing happens as much (if not more) on TVs vs their apps.
While TikTok did launch an app for connected TVs in November 2021, the company hasn't pushed it as actively as Alphabet markets YouTube as a TV alternative.
From an advertiser perspective, this means we'll continue to see a bifurcation of ad dollars between large-screen video and small-screen video. This may artificially constrain TikTok's ad revenue growth and create opportunities for others.
TikTok is making a big push into gaming, adding a dedicated tab within the short-form video platform, its first venture into a different entertainment format.
The Chinese-owned company is the latest video platform to expand beyond video into games, one of the most lucrative entertainment industries, following Netflix’s launch of mobile games last year and filling a void left by rivals Snapchat and Facebook, which are winding down their gaming platforms.
Users will be able to access the games via a button on the homepage of what is one of the world’s most popular video apps. It will feature a host of mobile games where ads can be served and users can pay for additional content, according to four people familiar with the plans.