Technology has had a major impact on many aspects of daily life and that is certainly the case when it comes to how people spend their free time.

It is not that long ago where listening to the radio and reading books were the ‘go-to’ activities for millions of people, but the landscape has changed dramatically since the turn of the century.

The creation of the internet opened up a whole new world of possibilities, from free online games to complex MMORPGs, providing a platform for people to amuse themselves in thousands of different ways.

One pastime that has become hugely popular during the 21st century is online social gaming, so read on as we take a closer look at this modern-day phenomenon.

Mobile Tech Powering Growth in Internet Usage

Most people would be lost without their mobile devices, a factor that is perfectly demonstrated by how long people spend on them each day.

Studies have shown that mobile usage is continuing to rise, with the daily average per person expected to hit four hours by 2021.

Playing online bingo games, free slots and other social games are amongst a plethora of entertainment activities that are powering the growth.

It is estimated that mobile games will make up around 60 percent of the gaming industry over the next couple of years, highlighting the shift in user habits.

People are Competitive by Nature

The rise in popularity of social gaming undoubtedly has its roots in the fact that many people across the world love to compete against others.

Puzzle games are the most popular genre with mobile gamers, with arcade, action, racing and strategy rounding off the top five.

Adventure, casino, board, simulation and word games complete the top 10, demonstrating that people enjoy being tested when they are playing games.

Developers have tapped into this ethos, creating wonderful games that keep people returning to them time after time.

Embracing the Social Side of Gaming

Advancements in technology have made it much easier for people to stay connected and this is an element that games developers have leveraged to their advantage.

For instance, anyone who loves playing bingo in a land-based venue will know that the social element is as important as playing the game itself.

The best online bingo operators have capitalised on this by incorporating chatrooms into their sites, allowing players to interact with fellow players.

This provides the perfect platform for people to meet up with friends, family or other like-minded individuals in a fun and friendly environment.

Social Networking and Gaming

Facebook is another great example of where the worlds of gaming and socialising have become joined at the hip over the past few years.

In addition to allowing people to interact with friends and family, Facebook also offers access to tons of social games.

Titles such as Candy Crush, FarmVille and Pirate Kings have exploited people’s competitive nature, with developers using the enticement of winning virtual goods to keep users engaged.

This element gives the games an almost hypnotic attraction, tempting players into repeatedly returning to see just how far they can progress.

Tapping into the Desire for Retro

While the rise of social gaming has been driven by advancements in tech, the sector has also cleverly tapped into people’s desire for the things they loved in the past.

Retro games are a genre in their own right, with old favourites like Pac-Man, Space Invaders and others all available to play on social gaming sites.

Nostalgia has also hit the slots sector, with developers often resurrecting some of the classic gameplay elements of yesteryear into new games.

This and the factors detailed previously have unquestionably established social gaming as a mainstream entertainment activity and it looks set to stay that way for many years to come.