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Peter Relan谈CrowdStar移动领域发展策略

发布时间:2011-12-21 15:51:07 Tags:,,

作者:Eric Eldon

起步于Facebook的社交游戏公司CrowdStar去年稳步地向手机领域推进,成果不断提升。现在,该公司打算用《Social Girl》表明自己进驻手机领域的立场,这款游戏发布于1周前,下载量突破100万,在iOS营收榜单上位于第6。

该公司首席执行官Peter Relan在最近媒体采访中提到了CrowdStar社交、手机和扩张至亚洲等方面的最新情况。

social-girl(from insidemobileapps)

social-girl(from insidemobileapps)


今年我们的手机社交游戏取得了较大的发展,现在公司50%的盈利来自于手机平台。这是因为我们拥有两款市场大作,《Top Girl》和《Social Girl》。我们为半数收益来自移动领域的情况感到很兴奋。

最新的Inside Virtual Goods报告称,通过虚拟商品盈利的免费游戏——手机社交游戏今年的总产值可能会达到5亿美元左右。你对此有何感想?公司产品在Android上的表现如何?

在Android平台上,《Top Girl》的表现很不错,但是依然还有提升的空间。根据我所听到的消息,Android上免费游戏的产值为1亿美元左右,余下的盈利都在iOS上。

盈利显然是Android平台上最重要的关注点。比如,在Kindle Fire上我们已经看到了每用户平均盈利取得较好的成果,但与iOS相比仍然较低。Android的问题在于,电信运营商出售的Android移动设备较为便宜,它的用户群类似于功能手机。iPhone用户总体上比Android用户更为富有。


我希望Android能够加快运营商计费服务的发展步伐。Google Checkout和谷歌钱包的确算是个长期的战略性举措,但是现在似乎还没有获得真正的突破,谷歌在这一点上已经落后了。





我们还未听说过此举会对游戏行业产生积极的影响,我认为原因在于,HTML5游戏就技术上而言还相对不成熟。你没法让习惯于使用Objective C和Java构建客户端游戏的开发者在短时间内做出新的选择。因而,其移动平台或许将缺乏高质量的游戏。



最大的转变是我们推出的Project Trident战略,它让玩家可以随时随地地玩我们的游戏。这是我们目前的愿景。在中国和日本市场中,我们的游戏并不在Facebook或手机平台上运营。






我们允许玩家使用他们的Facebook帐号在iOS设备上玩游戏。我们发现,大多数人事实上更偏爱他们的手机社交圈。这是我们从《It Girl》转向《Top Girl》的部分原因。


Interview: CrowdStar’s Peter Relan, On Building Social Games For Mobile (And Making Social Girl An iOS Hit)

Eric Eldon

CrowdStar, a social gaming company that got its start on Facebook, has been steadily pushing into mobile over the last year, with improving results. Today, it’s trying to drive that point home by announcing that its latest game, Social Girl, has reached a million downloads and reached #6 overall on iOS since launching a week ago.

That’s good for the company, sure, but the better news is how its overall mobile efforts have gone to date. I spoke with chief executive Peter Relan earlier today to hear more about it all. He’s one of the most publicly opinionated executives in the social gaming industry. Here’s the latest from on social, mobile, and expansion into Asia.

TechCrunch: So tell me about this year. You started out mostly on Facebook, but now you’re focused elsewhere — even though you still have more than a million daily active users on Facebook [according to AppData].

Peter Relan: We’ve seen a pretty dramatic uptick in mobile social gaming this year, to the extent that 50% of revenues now come from mobile. That’s because we got two big hits: top girl and social girl. To be clear, we’re exiting with 50% of our revenue runway coming from mobile, but not for the calendar year.

Mobile social gaming — free games that monetize through virtual goods — is probably going to make almost $500 million this year.

TechCrunch: That’s basically what the latest Inside Virtual Goods report says [see our previous coverage]. Can you tell me how that breaks down for you? How is Android doing?

Peter Relan: With Android, Top Girl is doing pretty well but we haven’t scaled it up yet. Everything I hear suggests that there’s something like $100 million coming in to free-to-play games on Android. The rest is iOS.

The thing about Android is obviously monetization. For example, on the Kindle Fire we’re already seeing much better numbers — average revenue per user, and the rest — even if it’s small. The thing about Android is that it’s sold by the telcos for free or cheap, almost like feature phones in terms of users. So compared to the iPhone, demographically, the wealthier audience is there versus the Android.

TechCrunch: But it’s not just audience, it’s how Google does payments, right? What do you want to see change?

Peter Relan: I would like android to accelerate direct carrier billing. Google checkout and wallet — that’s a very long term strategic initiative, but not likely to take off on a mobile device because they’re just behind.

Amazon already has 150 million credit cards on file, Apple has hundreds of millions. Android needs to leverage carrier billing very, very aggressively.

Especially for things like free-to-play virtual goods. They’re in-app. As the user is playing along, they’ll hit a point where they want to buy virtual goods. If you make the payment easy, they’ll keep paying. But if you the user have to go off and do five things, if you don’t have an account, you won’t buy.

That’s not the same for free games that make money on advertising, of course.

TechCrunch: What about Facebook’s latest mobile launch? How is that going for you?

Peter Relan: We haven’t heard or seen that much traction in terms of gaming, which I attribute to the fact that HTML5 games, which they’re supporting, are relatively immature as a technology. You can’t suddenly take people who have learned to build native client games on Objective C and Java and have them go build with fewer options. It just lacks the supply of high-quality games.

Changing to focus on HTML5 requires massive tech and workflow adjustments. Facebook is taking a long-term strategic directional initiative, which developers have to compare to the here-and-now money initiative.

TechCrunch: How are you adapting? You still have a significant business on Facebook, but that’s not where you launched this game.

Peter Relan: The biggest transformation has been our Project Trident strategy. So you can play anywhere, anytime. That’s our vision now. There are times where I’m simply not on Facebook or on mobile devices — China and Japan. Our games don’t rely on Facebook in those places.

At this point we’re looking at Facebook as one of three platforms versus the main platform, the other two being mobile platforms, and non-Facebook social platforms in Asia.

We’ll look at every Facebook game we consider building, and compare to opportunities to build social games on mobile or launch social in other markets.

That’s been a change over the past year from our default-Facebook position in 2010. Zynga is the main other company that has been making this type of move to focus on multiple platforms.

TechCrunch: Game developers have talked over the years about creating a unified gaming experience, where you take your identity with you across platforms. Do people actually want that?

Peter Relan: We have both options in many of our games, but we find that actually it isn’t necessarily that the social graphs are shared right now.

We do allow players to play on mobile using iOS using their Facebook identities. What we’ve found is that the large majority actually prefer their mobile social graph. That’s part of why we changed to Top Girl from It Girl.

I think it was do with what mobile is — more about your virtual identity, like dragonslayer482 or whatever your online identity is.

In Japan it’s also a lot more about users’ virtual identity. That’s one of the reasons that Facebook has not done well in Japan. (Source: Techcrunch)