You might be under the impression that the video game company that make the most money in the world would be Electronic Arts, Sony, Microsoft, Activision, or even Google and Apple. But according to a new report from New Zoo that distinction belongs to Tencent.
According to data released by the Entertainment Software Association (ESA), around one-third of Americans ages 13 and older play video games on their smart phones, tablets, and portable gaming devices (3DS, PS Vita, etc.) on a regular basis. The new research comes from a new ESA report, "Mobile Games: Expanding Gameplay Across America."
GungHo Online Entertainment's popular mobile game continues to hit major milestones. According to an announcement from the company today, Puzzle & Dragons was downloaded five million times in North America last week (September 16). Puzzle & Dragons is currently available on Kindle Fire, Android devices, and iOS.
Apple had a strong opening weekend in iPhone 6 sales, according to figures the company released yesterday. According to Apple, it sold (combined) over 10 million iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus phones in the three days since its September 19 launch. That's twice as many phones as when it launched the iPhone 5 in 2012.
According to this VentureBeat report, the federal government is beginning to crack down on companies that are allegedly violating the Children’s Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA). The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) issued a statement on its blog this week announcing a $450,000 settlement with Yelp for collecting the personal information (names and other personal identifiers) of children in violation of COPPA.
Candy Crush Saga maker King has settled its copyright case against 6waves, has received an undisclosed sum of money, and has ensured the closure of 6waves' Farm Epic and Treasure Epic games - two games it claims were infringing on its copyrights.
"We are pleased that this matter has now been resolved," commented King's chief legal officer Robert Miller.
Electronic Arts says that it has two teams investigating the possibility of creating game apps for Apple's new "Apple Watch." The Apple Watch was announced yesterday alongside the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus. It will retail for right around $349 (for the low-end model) and will require an iPhone 5S or higher in order to work.
The Federal Trade Commission announced that Google has agreed to pay $19 million to consumers (parents) whose children made purchases through Google Play without their express consent or permission. The FTC alleged that Google was unfairly billing account holders on its Google Play market for Android-based mobile and tablet devices by not getting express authorization from parents when kids bought things both in the store and within apps.
Kim Kardashian appeared on NBC's morning program The Today Show to defend her ultra popular mobile title Kim Kardashian: Hollywood. Last week New York Times best-selling author Ayelet Waldman took to Twitter to lambaste Kardashian, blaming her for her son spending $120 in the game for virtual goods. Waldman called her an "evil scumbag."
Social and mobile game maker Zynga posted a $63 million net loss for the second quarter of FY 2014. The company reported non-GAAP quarterly revenues of $153 million, with non-GAAP profits of $3 million - a bit better than the $6 million loss for the same period a year ago. Bookings, or virtual item sales, were $175 million, down 7 percent from the same period a year ago.
Zynga also reduced its full-year guidance on bookings to be between $695 million and $725 million, down from an earlier guidance between $770 million to $810 million.
Sony is no longer mucking around with Android devices. The company announced today that it will no longer support releasing games on Android devices through its PlayStation Mobile initiative. Instead the company will put its focus back on PS Vita and its micro-console, the PS Vita TV.
The company launched PlayStation Mobile in 2012, allowing developers to publish games on the Vita without having to jump through the hoops of certification on that platform. It also allowed for publishing games to PlayStation-certified Android devices.
The Federal Communications Commission has sent a letter to Verizon asking the company a series of pointed questions concerning its plan to throttle unlimited data plan customers on its 4G LTE networks. The company announced earlier this month that it planned to start prioritizing customers who were not unlimited data plan customers over those who are - all in the name of network management.
Two weeks after the U.S. Supreme Court gave a crushing blow to supposed patent trolls with last month's ruling in Alice v. CLS Bank, Samsung is trying to use that same ruling to knock out two claims by Apple in its long running feud over mobile device patents. The Supreme Court decision in Alice v. CLS Bank basically said that lower courts should be throwing out more cases that involve patents that are too abstract in nature to be legally valid.
Verizon’s 4G networks soon will start feeling a little less unlimited for customers who don't pay for data by the gigabyte. According to GIGA OM, Verizon will start prioritizing traffic so that customers who pay for mobile data by the gigabyte get access over customers who use Verizon’s unlimited plans. The new policies will only apply when the network gets crowded, according to Verizon.
Film company Lionsgate Entertainment has invested an undisclosed amount of capital in Finish developer Next Games. Next Games is a game studio based in Helsinki, Finland that was formed last year by former Rovio, Disney and Supercell developers. The studio raised $6 million in its first round of public funding, and is currently working on a free-to-play mobile game based on AMC's The Walking Dead show called No Man's Land and another undisclosed project.
The European Union announced today that it is working with member states to create guidelines that ensure that games and apps with in-app purchases are marketed to consumers in an "appropriate manner." These rules come after an investigation into App store marketing practices aimed at children.
The EU said that, going forward, the following guidelines will be applied to Apple, Google, and other app store owners:
- Games advertised as "free" should not mislead consumers about the true costs involved
In its filing with the FCC about Chairman Wheeler's proposal to allow ISPs to charge content providers for faster direct access to customers, AT&T said it supports the ban of fast lanes... as long as there are some major loopholes. Naturally these loopholes would benefit AT&T's broadband and wireless businesses.
AT&T, like Comcast, is taking an amicable position because it wants the FCC and other government regulatory agencies to approve its merger with DirecTV (in Comcast's case it is seeking approval for a merger with Time Warner Cable).
Mind Candy founder and CEO Michael Acton Smith announced via a YouTube video that he is leaving the company. Smith founder the company in 2004 and saw great success with its popular mobile game Moshi Monsters. But smith says that the great success the company experienced forced him to spend less time developing games and more time handling the business side of things. His departure from the company is a return to getting back to the art of making games.
Glu Mobile's Kim Kardashian iOS game is set generate $200 million annual revenue for the company, according to one analyst. The game has already boosted the company's share price by 40 percent in less than a month, and according to what analyst Doug Creutz told Bloomberg, revenue from Glu's game Kim Kardashian: Hollywood could reach $200 million for the year.
About two weeks ago, Electronic Arts boss Andrew Wilson talked about what a shame it was that EA made a mobile version of Dungeon Keeper that most fans of the franchise hated with a passion that burned hotter than the fire of a thousand suns.
Yesterday, in an interview with GamesIndustry International, EA Mobile big cheese Frank Gibeau suggests that EA might have innovated too much with Dungeon Keeper Mobile.
Real-money in gaming technology company Gamblit Gaming has announced partnerships with Shanda Games International Europe, Gamiker and Flexball. All three companies will eventually utilize Gamblit Gaming’s mobile platform technology to let companies to add real money gaming mechanics to any mobile or PC game.
Amazon is refusing to comply with a Federal Trade Commission settlement plan related to in-app purchases. Apple settled for $32.5 million in refunds to parents who claim they were billed for games and in-app content their children were playing on their mobile or tablet devices without their express consent. Apple was also ordered to change its billing practices to make sure that in-app purchases require consent from parents or device owners before transactions could be completed.
Tablets have overtaken Nintendo's 3DS as the most popular personal gaming device owned by UK children, according to new data from Futuresource Consulting - as reported on by MCV.
Gamasutra reports that one of the biggest game publishers in China, China Mobile Games and Entertainment Group has laid off several executives following allegations of bribery. The company laid off nine executives from their positions earlier this week, including President Shuling Ying.
The popular and often copied Temple Run games on the Apple App Store have been downloaded one billion times, according to GII. Developed by Imangi Studios, Temple Run and Temple Run 2 are world-running platformer games that are extremely popular and have been cloned by other developers trying to cash in on the games' popularity.