This paper reviews both experimental and theoretical work carried out on the homogeneous gas-phase direct partial oxidation of methane to methanol and formaldehyde. Included in the review are technoeconomic evaluations which set the conversion and selectivity targets for this reaction to be competitive with conventional technology. Results reported for experimental studies are discussed in terms of the process control parameters including reactor type, reactor temperature, feed oxygen concentration, pressure, and gas flow rate. In addition, the effects of packings and additives on conversion and selectivity have also been evaluated. Modelling studies, both isothermal and non-isothermal, have been appraised in terms of their ability to describe the unique features of this reaction system. Recommendations for future research are also made.