What I saw and what I did at TwitchCon 2024 (and what it means for mobile)

Here’s what the world’s biggest streaming convention was like on the ground, and what we saw of mobile while we were there

What I saw and what I did at TwitchCon 2024 (and what it means for mobile)
  • Twitchcon 2024 wrapped up this past weekend
  • But what exactly happened, and what did it mean for mobile?
  • We dig into all of that, and what the new Twitch app might mean for streaming mobile

From Saturday, June 29th Sunday 30th, the Rotterdam Ahoy Convention Centre was packed to the rafters with people from all over the world. Their reason for being there? To connect with communities and the people that had helped build them at TwitchCon 2024.

Enthusiasts of everything from video games and cosplay to cooking and karaoke had come either to see their favourite streamers in real life, to meet others with similar interests or simply to experience a massive conference packed with something for everyone.

And we were on the ground as we, for the first time in years, decided to poke around and see exactly what TwitchCon is like. And, of course, see where mobile fits in as well.

The opening ceremony of Twitchcon 2024

What is Twitch and Twitchcon?

If you’re not familiar with Twitch, well, what rock have you been living under? But seriously; Twitch is a streaming platform that first started up in 2011. It’s grown from being a spin-off of the now-forgotten Justin.tv (it was created specifically for gaming content) to being a brand and platform that caters to thousands of streamers and millions of viewers.

Content ranges from people playing video games and giving commentary, esports streams, speedruns, real-life streams, cooking streams, karaoke, DJ sets and so much more it’d be impractical to list them all.

Suffice it to say, that Twitch has grown into something far bigger than anyone could have expected. TwitchCon initially started as something akin to a small gathering in a handful of convention rooms, to an international event that attracts thousands of attendees. There are booths in an exhibition hall featuring independent artists, gaming-related products and more, but the main attraction has always been the streamers and the people attending.

What’s it like on the ground?

The 'Kappa Kabbana' at Twitchcon 2024

For those not already deeply embedded in Twitch and its culture, TwitchCon might seem an intimidating beast. Every hallway is packed with people either cosplayed up to the nines, dressed bizarrely or simply laden down with merchandise and free handouts. It is perhaps the purest example of the shameless, strangely sincere and sometimes eccentric nature of conventions that many others have since sanded off.

Put simply, this ain’t MCM or ComicCon. And while there are plenty of companies shelling out cash for a spot in the exhibition hall, you’d never mistake any of the attendees for anything but passionate diehards for their chosen interest. That means a lot of cosplayers, musicians, and artists, all of whom either stream on Twitch, follow those on the platform or have otherwise found community with other users.

It can seem a little scoff-worthy at first, but having seen people enjoying themselves so much I’d have to be a Scrooge not to say that it’s at least a little heartwarming seeing people being brought together, even by something so odd.

So, yes, a mix of a regular convention, panels featuring top streaming stars and the occasional voice-acting celebrity (like the Baldur’s Gate 3 cast) all interspersed with community-driven events, sing-alongs, meetups and more. That’s TwitchCon 2024 in a nutshell, and it’s certainly grown from what someone told me had been a relatively tiny event only five years before in San Francisco.

The show floor at Twitchcon 2024

Where does mobile come into this?

Now this is a more difficult question to answer. Mainly because mobile is not really a major thing on Twitch. Gaming is of course, as is virtually any bizarre category you might imagine, from vtubers to cooking and DJing. Mobile gaming however was not a major feature, and scarcely any of the featured streamers in attendance or available for interview had even touched it.

That’s not to say it doesn’t exist of course, but it certainly pales in comparison to mainstream console and PC gaming. And that seemed to be the overwhelming sentiment. That mobile gaming exists on Twitch, but it’s not generally seen as that important.

But that’s far from disinterest, and many of the people I spoke to, whether they were management, streamers, reporters or attendees, seemed positive about the idea of seeing more mobile gaming on the platform. But they often cited the particular genres, the technical aspects of having to look at a phone rather than glance off to the side to interact with their viewers, and other issues for why it hasn’t yet taken off.

The unveiling of the new bleeding purple heart awards

Did mobile show up?

Now, interestingly enough there were three major representatives of mobile gaming at TwitchCon regardless. The first, and biggest, was Mythwalker, an upcoming AR RPG where you explore the real world to complete quests. They were part-sponsoring the Twitch Rivals arena, itself a major attraction at the event.

Meanwhile, upcoming titles Delta Force Hawk Ops and Once Human had their PC versions on full display in large booths. All of which indicated that they were aware of the massive multiplatform audience that was in attendance.

But more than that, what really caught my eye wasn’t necessarily mobile gaming, but the amount of smartphones in use. Everywhere I looked people were using their phones to stream the event live, and in my conversation with Rachel Delphin, I found that irl streamers once upon a time had to use massive backpacks to carry their technical equipment and maintain a strong enough connection to stream.

Cosplayer at Twitchcon 2024

Is the new Twitch App a game-changer?

Now the big news. The TwitchCon 2024 opening ceremony saw the unveiling of the new Twitch app for public access for the first time. Attendees at the opening ceremony could scan a QR code to download the new app and test it out while they were at the event.

This new app features a discovery feed (akin to TikTok) and a redesigned interface with new inclusions like stories. The focus on this mobile app made me perk up, and I certainly had to ask around about it.

Turns out that Twitch’s popularity on mobile is massive, with 70% of new viewers starting their first sessions on mobile. Desktop is still the preferred platform for the majority of users, but around half are primarily on mobile, and up to 40% exclusively use their phones.

Now does that mean by virtue of primarily using their phones and mobile devices that these are people who really want to see mobile gaming? Not necessarily. But it does show that even before the introduction of this new app, mobile was a major force on Twitch. It could be that these changes could spur a new wave of interest in the Twitch App, and that interest might then bring in mobile gaming.

That damned giant inflatable duck at Twitchcon 2024


So, overall the presence of mobile gaming was not front and centre at Twitch. But at the same time whenever I asked about it nobody seemed to brush it off, and many seemed positive about the idea. The introduction of the new Twitch app itself is also something to keep an eye on, as this kind of major new introduction of features, interactivity and more could really open up the potential for more streamers, including those focused primarily on mobile games, to make the jump to Twitch.

Iwan Morris
Iwan Morris
Iwan is a Cardiff-based freelance writer, who joined the Pocket Gamer Biz site fresh-faced from University before moving to the Pocketgamer.com editorial team in November of 2023.