video games



The vast majority of U.S. gamers now play online and mobile is catching up.

 

mobilegames

Online games are booming: now around 72% of gamers are playing via the Internet, according to the research firm NPD.  Last year around 67% of U.S. gamers played online.

The number of U.S. gamers who use a PC for online gaming declined by 4 percentage points over the past year, to 68 percent. That’s still enough to make the PC the most popular platform for online gaming but mobile is catching up quickly. The number of respondents who said they use mobile devices for online gaming rose 12 percentage points over the same time period, to 56 percent.

The online survey was conducted in February and March, completed by more than 8,800 people who belong to NPD’s online panel.

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Analysis

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

 



Rovio, the Angry Birds owner, has 100% growth in 2012 and wants to become the next Disney

 

rovio_toys

Rovio just reported that revenues have doubled in 2012, due to strong game and consumer-product sales.  Rovio Entertainment is producing Angry Birds and several other mobile games.  Revenues reached around $195 million, up 101 percent from $97 million in 2011. Earnings before interest and taxes are up 50 percent from $60.2 million in 2011 to $98.5 million in 2012.  Headcount has doubled to 518 employees.

According to Rovio CFO, Herkko Soininen:  “We doubled our revenue with an EBIT margin of 50%, more than doubled our headcount, established new offices, and a new business ventures unit. Also, to protect our own, as well as our partners’ and our fans’ interests, we continue to invest heavily in brand protection globally.”

In 2012, Rovio successfully launched four major mobile games: Angry Birds Space, Amazing Alex, Bad Piggies, and Angry Birds Star Wars.  Sales of these games, along with in-app advertising, were two of Rovio’s major revenue streams.

The other major area of growth is Rovio’s consumer products line of toys, branded peripherals, and smartphone cases. The derivative products division more than tripled in revenues and now generates nearly 45 percent of its total revenue. A new important milestone is the active-monthly-user count that is now past the quarter billion mark.

Rovio CEO, Mikael Hed suggests: “Rovio has grown from a phenomenon to a very successful global business. In 2010 we set out to build an entertainment company and after last years performance we are on a strong path to achieve our goal.”

Rovio wants to become a worldwide content and merchandise powerhouse with a series of new titles, consumer products, and entertainment releases in the works. The company is inspired by Disney’s business model.  It is also working on an Angry Birds cartoon, and also a movie for 2016.

“We have had a stellar start for this year,” said Hed. “In addition to our successful games portfolio, we recently launched our first Angry Birds Toons series through third-party partners and our own in-game distribution channel. We will continue to strengthen our position in the entertainment business through continuing to innovate on our existing brands, exploring creating new IP as well as exploring opportunities with external parties.”

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Analysis

Louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter : @InfocomAnalysis

 

The economy of applications is growing 62% this year.

angrybuirds

WhatsApp and Angry birds are two great examples to illustrate the fast growth of the applications sector.  Every minute, WhatsApp app posts 118 million SMS, every hour 708 million SMS, and around 17,000 million every day. If WhatsApp charged for each SMS, Jan Koum and Brian Acton, its creators, would be the richest men in the world and it would probably be the most profitable company. WhatsApp is a good example of the Internet economy with startups trying to get first a mass of loyal customers through network effects, and later trying to charge users a small fee.

Apple App store has over 800,000 apps and Google Play offers another 700,000 apps. Microsoft, Amazon and Blackberry are other main app stores.  Up to 11 platforms and 24 independent stores are available.  There are around 2.4 million apps in the world, according to the CTIA. Almost 65% of the app are free. According to Gartner, this year the applications economy will generate around US $24,450 million, 62% more than the previous year, but it represents only half of what is expected for 2015.  But for every successful application like WhatsApp or Instagram (bought by Facebook for US$984 million) there are tens of thousands of unpopular applications which will disappear.

According to Gartner, 63% of the applications we have today in mobile are unconnected with what we had last year. While the most popular apps like Facebook and  Twitter grow steadily, the rest of the sector is very volatile, such as games that have popularized the “gamification economy” (encouraging activity with prizes) and freemium, consisting of free download after micropayments or a fee for extra services.  For example, it is free to download a heart rate monitor, but you have to pay around US$ 3.25 for the historical graphs.

According to a survey conducted last year by GigaOM between application developers, the average income is 38,000 per year. Only 12% earn more than $80,000 and 65% less than $28,000.

The economics of applications are cannibalizing other internet sectors.  For instance, Internet browsers are used less, because consumers are increasingly jumping from app to app, and it also takes time away from other activities.   According to Flurry Analytics, the time spent with applications, more than two hours a day, is getting close of passing the average time in front of the TV. The main cause of this is the popularity of games that is made almost half (43%) of all the time spent with the applications (26% is social networking, 10% is made up of  other entertainment and news 2%).

According to CTIA, in the last five years, the economy of applications in the USA has created 510,000 jobs.  A good example how the sector has developed is the evolution of the Angry Birds franchise.  Three years after the creation of the most popular mobile game as a free application, Angry Birds now has its own theme parks in various parts of the world, and is offering prepaid cards.  The owner of Angry Birds, Rovio is launching its own video network for games and has many growth opportunities.  The CFO of Rovio, Mr. Vesterbacka, said the firm has managed revenues of around $3 billion in the last three years through sales of the game itself and a wide array of marketing ventures, including clothing, stuffed animals, theme parks, a soon-to-be launched animated television series and a feature-length film due out in 2016.

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Analysis

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

“Le Québec a besoin de plus d’entrepreneurs comme Dominique Brown” est disponible sur LesNews.ca

http://lesnews.ca/technologie/34408-le-quebec-a-besoin-de-plus-dentrepreneurs-comme-dominique-brown/

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Analysis

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

 

Infographic on the success of Nintendo

MBA Online did an interesting infographic on the success of Nintendo.

<a href=”http://www.mbaonline.com/nintendo”><img src=”http://images.mbaonline.com.s3.amazonaws.com/Nintendo-MBA.gif” alt=”Nintendo” width=”550″ border=”0″ /></a>

Created by: <a href=”http://www.MBAOnline.com/“>MBAOnline.com</a>

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Analysis

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

Comment faire sa marque dans un monde dominé par Apple et compagnie, est disponible sur LesNews

Entrevue avec Marcel Côté de SECOR (acquis par KPMG) sur la gestion de l’innovation dans les industries des technologies de l’information es des communications (TIC). Conseils pour les entrepreneurs et gestionnaires.

http://lesnews.ca/technologie/26674-comment-faire-sa-marque-dans-un-monde-domine-par-apple-et-compagnie/

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Analysis

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

 

Strategy Expert Marcel Côté on Platforms, Apps, and the Over-emphasis of Innovation is available on Techvibes

Second part of an interview with Marcel Côté of SECOR about innovation in the Information and Communications Technology industries (ICT).

http://www.techvibes.com/blog/strategy-expert-marcel-cote-on-platforms-apps-and-the-over-emphasis-of-innovation-2012-10-05

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Analysis

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

 

 

Our new article “Montreal Dominates Canada’s Video Game Scene” is available on Techvibes

http://www.techvibes.com/blog/montreal-dominates-canadas-video-game-scene-2012-04-26

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Intelligence

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

Our new article “Quebec’s Video Game Industry Continues Incredible Hiring Spree” is available on Techvibes

http://www.techvibes.com/blog/quebecs-video-game-industry-continues-incredible-hiring-spree-2012-04-25

 

Louis Rhéaume

Infocom Intelligence

louis@infocomintelligence.com

Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

Tablets offer a similar opportunity as consoles in video games

[Published originally on MONDAY, FEBRUARY 27, 2012]

According to the creator of the blockbuster video game Final Fantasy, Hironobu Sakaguchi, tablets offer a similar opportunity as consoles for developers in video games. Final Fantasy had 80 million users and was among the most popular game in the 1990′s. Sakaguchi bets on mobile and tablets as the formats of the future. He gave an interview to El Pais.

Question: How do you envision the future role of video games?

Answer: The graphics and sound will continue to evolve. Not only in this format. We will see more and more advanced phones.

P. Do you think the tablets and phones can compete with the consoles?

R. The hardware offers similar architecture. For example, PlayStation Vita, coming out next week on sale in Europe, has some very similar to the iPhone. The tablets will have a similar power to home consoles. I think as a developer, it proposes an interesting scenario.

P. Do you think Sony and Nintendo will succumb to this phenomenon and stop making consoles?

R. That’s a business decision. The fact is that the devices increasingly look more technically. In the future there will be much difference between supports. Soon we will see games made for television. The important thing is what the content send on the support.

P. How has meaning to re-direct ‘The Last Story’ after 20 years?

R. The role of producer and director is more diffuse than before. In Final Fantasy VI said goodbye to the address, but I stayed close to each creation. After, the Last Story, I took a year to think about new ideas. I realized I had to be getting involved and above all the process.

P. The critical stress games how to leverage the Wii graphics, do you think has peaked?

R. The graphics are complex.I always try to look after the maximum artistic aspect, but I think the limit is imagination.

P. One of its hallmarks is the characters, how is the process of creation?

R. Tactfully and making clear to the player who is who. Sometimes you come up with details, other times with conversations between them or commenting on aspects of the scenario to create some mystery and awaken interest.

P. In all his titles the characters have suffered some trauma vital, why?

R. All human beings have some kind of trauma. The important thing is to make it a motivation to do something, change things, brand personality.

P. Despite this depressing and very personal air has allowed users to customize to your liking, is to be projected on them?

R. The designer did not agree with me in doing something so open. It seemed to me very important that users feel closer and identified with a character with which they will live a long adventure.

P. The Last Story was released in Japan last year and has now reached Europe. Why is America? Is there much difference between these three regions?

R. The decision to take him to the U.S. is Nintendo of America. I hope so. I have great confidence in its success in Europe. I do not think that is both a cultural issue as to find the right niche audience. Depends on gender, age, interests … When I create a new title I don’t put the focus on a particular market.

P. The latter title is a renewal of the genre of role-playing games on consoles. What is the perfect combination of strategy and action to be successful?

R. I wish I had the recipe. I try always, with varying success.

P. Do you plan to create a game of this style to 3DS?

R. I have no plans for this platform. Instead I am making three games for IOS for both iPhone and iPad.

P. For five years is almost impossible to find a great production to dispense with an online version and a cooperative mode, how do you prepare for this format?

R. It is one of the most difficult aspects of the creative process. The whole team together, we discussed and we took it as an adventure completely different from zero. We have differentiated in the way of communicating because many games have the voice chat feature and I hate to use foul language. We decided that they would be used in the game dialogues themselves, which are written to communicate between players. In Japan it worked great. I hope that in Europe also like this integration.

Louis Rhéaume
Infocom Intelligence
louis@infocomintelligence.com
Twitter: @InfocomAnalysis

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