Arabic gaming boom as Twitch streams surge in Mideast
The COVID-19 lockdown in the Middle East has sparked an Arabic gaming boom with Twitch streams in the language more than doubling during March and April.
The video site, which allows users to broadcast their gameplay live to fans around the world, recorded a total of 62,582 active streams as countries across the region followed strict social distancing rules, meaning more time spent at home for gamers. During March, Twitch streams in Arabic increased by 95.3 percent yearon-year and 36.9 percent compared to the previous month, while in April the yearly increase was 109.9 percent. The figures point to a gaming surge across the Middle East, with many of the top players coming from Saudi Arabia, the UAE and Bahrain. David Parker, co-chief investment officer at Bahrain Economic Development Board, said: “With the world’s fastest growing gaming market and a thriving tech ecosystem, the Middle East is on another level when it comes to opportunities for developers.”