Android Cost-Per-Install Rises Over iOS

After spending what seems like an eternity in the catch-up game, the Android platform managed to finally overtake iOS a couple of months ago in terms of revenue. However, it appears that the CPI (cost per install) is picking up the pace as well.

A new report from GamesIndustry International indicates that, according to data provided by Fiksu, the CPI for Android has managed to increase over iOS, with the average cost on Android being $1.82 and Apple’s format sitting at 50 cents less, at $1.32.

“There’s definitely opportunity to reach a continually growing user base on Android, but it’s going to come at a cost,” said Fiksu’s Glen Kiladis. “Android games cost for the month of May were nearly 40 percent higher than iOS costs, a trend that can also be observed on a broader scale outside of just games. In fact, Android costs were up 72 percent since March, while iOS costs were relatively flat compared to just two months prior.”

He continued, “As we’ve mentioned before, these indexes include both incent and non-incent spending. As a result, iOS games costs are often times lower than Android games costs as a result of increased spending on IOS on lower-cost incentivized networks. Nonetheless, this is the highest Android games costs have been during the past year.

“When looking at year over year trends, Android costs were up 31 percent while iOS costs were down 25 percent. In May of 2014, costs on both platforms were hovering around the $1.50 mark.

“These higher costs on Android are not unexpected. In our broader Fiksu Indexes, we’ve observed a pattern of increasing costs across the board. However, as advertisers consistently employ higher-value targeting and more precise audience segmentation data, we expect that loyalty rates will also go up.”

It’ll be interesting to see how this shapes up over the next year…

Facebook Reveals Vision For Mobile Ads

With both its main social and Messenger apps doing well on the mobile front, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Facebook wants to roll out an effective ad program for mobile advertisers. But what exactly does it have in mind Well, thanks to a new video, Facebook has just provided an idea.

Re/code recently reported that the company rolled out the video during its visit to Cannes Lions, with product head Chris Cox presenting it this afternoon. With it, there’s a format provided, one that shows full-screen imagery, videos and product shots that offer full 360-degree rotation with a swipe across the screen. In short, it provides companies the opportunity to create a mini-version of their own website on Facebook’s application, keeping them on the app while moving them towards its specific set-up. The video is below.

Facebook has used this sort of set-up before with traditional content, including stories that could be found within its News Feed. That managed to draw out a number of strong advertising partners, including BuzzFeed and the New York Times, through hosted content that kept users on the Facebook site, rather than diverting them to a secondary link back to the advertiser’s page. The difference, however, is that video advertising seems to work better from a retailer’s perspective, although other companies can obviously take part as well.

Considering that 94 percent of the company’s overall revenue comes from advertising, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Facebook is focusing more on the video front. The question now, though, is just how effective it will be for companies in the long run. There are half a billion people who interact with the site from a mobile standpoint, although a right campaign to draw them in with still has yet to be found.

Hopefully we’ll see more of Facebook’s business plans with video soon, as well as what kind of partners will be on board for it. It does look innovative, but looks are one thing. Effectiveness is another.

Image source

Mobile Ad Spending Will Continue To Grow

We’ve spoken in the past about what kind of growth ad spending will go through over the next few years, including mobile exceeding desktop. However, a series of new charts have broken down just what kind of increases the industry is in for over the next few years.

DigiDay has reported how the state of mobile ad spending is looking, with information provided by MwC Outlook Report, Magna Global, Mary Meeker and eMarketer. Each chart breaks down specifics when it comes to certain spending, such as how much is being spent specifically on mobile versus desktop, and so on.

First up, as you can see, there was a time that desktop was getting more spending than mobile — last year, in fact. However, as the years continue onward, mobile will be taking more of a focus, and by 2018, it’ll overlap it by a few million dollars. By 2019, however, there will be a stark difference, with no indications of slowing down.

By 2017, it’s easy to see where most of global ad spending will be going. 37 percent will be devoted to television, while desktop will take 19.5 percent. Mobile will be close behind with 13 percent, although these numbers, again, could easily change in the following years. Surprising enough, newspaper still has a decent grasp with 11.8 percent, while magazines, radio and outdoor follow closely behind.

While television ad spending looks unstoppable in the previous chart, there are signs that it’s slowing down, as indicated by the above chart. Mobile will slowly increase over the next few years, while television will see a somewhat similar point, around the $180-$200 billion range.

As for which companies will lead the charge on mobile ad spending, Google will continue to be unstoppable over the next few years, with a large revenue share. However, Facebook will be close behind, at about halfway of what Google is spending, followed by Twitter, Pandora and Yahoo! with much lower numbers.

As for this somewhat complicated final chart, it shows a mobile monetization gap, with Americans spending 24 percent of their time using mobile devices, but only eight percent of ad dollars going into the format. That creates a noticeable gap of $25 billion, according to Mary Meeker’s Internet Trends Report.

More details on the report can be found here.

2K Games ‘Battleborn’ Marketing: Going Big

The array of games on display at E3 was vast, and there are many games worthy of focusing on. One interesting new IP was Battleborn, showcased by TakeTwo’s 2K Games studio with a significant floor presence. The game, created by Gearbox Software, is a first-person shooter with a vibe reminiscent of Team Fortress 2, in a cel-shaded style that’s colorful and appealing. This was one of the games at E3 that’s not a sequel, and it’s going to have to battle for attention and sales in a crowded field. Just how Battleborn is waging the fight offers some interesting tips for marketers.

Battleborn statues at E3

The marketing efforts for Battleborn were substantial at the show, pointing towards what will probably be a strong campaign for the fall (the game’s release is only listed as “Winter.”) The massive statues in the front of the booth were a major attractor for the crowds, drawing a steady stream of attendees posing in front to have their pictures taken. This is a common technique (last year, 2K did the same thing with Evolve) and an effective one, creating a draw from quite a distance across the hall even in an expo floor crowded with bright colors and signs. The biggest problem would be finding an effective use for these statues when they aren’t at shows – hopefully the company has a huge lobby or common room somewhere.

The company describes Battleborn as “a first-person-shooter with a deep roster of 25 playable heroes. Every hero has their own personality and comes equipped with their own unique weapons and powers. Through Battleborn’s accelerated character growth system, players will fully experience each hero’s leveling progression in a single story mission or multiplayer match.” This is a key differentiator that the company will no doubt continue to highlight in its marketing efforts. This progression system brings in an RPG element where players can level up to improve their augments, skills, and non-game-play things like ranks, titles, and badges. These are, effectively, marketing tools incorporated into the game design to encourage social sharing. This shows the importance of integrating marketing thinking into the game design process, because it will make marketing the game that much more effective later on.

Battleborn on display

Battleborn offers multiple different modes to broaden its appeal, from a story mode that can be played solo or with friends, to teams of players cooperating against waves of AI-controlled minions, to (of course) team vs. team deathmatches. This array of play options will help attract a variety of players, and no one can say for sure in advance which play mode will be most popular. When you’ve got all the pieces in place, why not offer more play modes The additional time and effort in development may offer a big benefit once the game is launched.


The marketing efforts shown at E3 center around the characters, who are plentiful (there are 25 so far), colorful, and clearly designed with an eye towards marketability. 2K Games produced a booklet they gave away at E3 showcasing some of the characters with colorful artwork and some descriptions. This shows that the lessons of games like League of Legends are being well learned by other companies. Colorful characters that have outsize personas and a distinctive look and attitude help pique player interest and drive people to look at the game. In the best case scenario, such characters become self-sustaining marketing efforts. Look, for example, at the large numbers of cosplayers who dress as various League of Legends characters. They are, in effect, walking billboards at many large consumer shows. No doubt 2K Games would love to see this happen with Battleborn.

Battleborn is coming out for Xbox One, PS4, and PC in the winter for $59.99. This may be something of a handicap for a multiplayer online game in this age of free-to-play games, but Battleborn’s quality and wealth of play modes should easily justify the purchase. While there will be plenty of competition, the game was fast, fluid, and fun, and it should easily hold its own. Doubtless there will be strong marketing support from 2K Games, and from the looks of the crowds lining up to play the game at E3 there should be plenty of eager fans ready to join this fight.

Hulu Bundles Up With Showtime’s Standalone Video Service

by Sahil Patel

Showtime’s standalone video service is coming to Hulu.

The two companies have formed a partnership that will give Hulu subscribers the opportunity to access Showtime’s service through their Hulu (formerly “Plus”) subscription account. Those who sign up will get a 30-day free access pass to Showtime, after which Showtime will cost $8.99 per month for Hulu subscribers. (If this sounds like a new type of pay-TV bundle for internet-TV customers, you’re not far off.)

Keep reading…

This article was originally posted on VideoInk and is reposted on [a]listdaily via a partnership with the news publication, which is the online video industry’s go-to source for breaking news, features, and industry analysis. Follow VideoInk on Twitter @VideoInkNews, or subscribe via for the latest news and stories, delivered right to your inbox.

‘Rock Band 4’: ‘The Response Has Been Phenomenal’

“We are blown away by the passion people have for this franchise,” said Greg LoPiccolo, creative lead at Harmonix. “We had this hope that people were still into it and when we went out and asked, people got excited.”

Now that Rock Band 4 is well and truly on its way, the company has been a presence at major gaming events as of late, and the same was of course true at E3. With a full outdoor stage and a line of attendees queuing up to rock out on the stage to an audience, Harmonix has given fans of the fun party game exactly what they’ve wanted in the franchise’s revival.

“The flagship feature is the new freestyle guitar solo,” said LoPiccolo. “Guitar players can actually craft their own guitar solos on the fly.”


Harmonix took the stage set-up at E3 to the legendary Mayan Theater at night for a preview party, showing just how fun it is to not just play but watch the game being played.Â

You really can’t get more rock n’ roll than this.


EA: There’s More To Mobile Than Branding

Over the years, Electronic Arts’ mobile division has based a great deal of its success on franchises. The Simpsons Tapped Out continues to be a big draw for the company, alongside its sports games and other titles. And this fall, it’ll continue that push with more releases, including Madden Mobile, FIFA and a game based on Universal’s Minions brand.

However, there’s more to a successful mobile game than just slapping a brand in place, according to the company’s senior vice president and general manager, Bill Mooney. Quality and good gameplay must also play their part to keep consumers coming back, such as is the case with Tapped Out.

GamesBeat recently spoke with Mooney about the company’s mobile approach during the Mobile Gaming USA conference in San Francisco, first discussing the positives and negatives regarding IP licenses for mobile games. “On balance, what I would say is that the value of branded IP – we’re at a point in the market where it’s relatively choked,” he explained. “Acquisition is a huge challenge. I do think table stakes is making a strong game. I think that’s an even higher bar when using other people’s IP or co-developing. With Simpsons, we literally co-developed with them. We have the real writers. The head writer of the show is essentially our game showrunner on their side.

“Why it’s worth doing that is because you capture an audience that loves something. In a place with a million and a half apps, tapping into that – especially a long-running, beloved, powerful IP – gives you access to an audience that would be very difficult to get to otherwise. We can capture casual as well as core, too.”

Mooney also touched on the longevity of Simpsons, now three years old. “The numbers on it demonstrate, for the genre – it has unusually good long-term retention,” he said. “I was the general manager of FarmVille at its biggest. I worked on lots of builders at Zynga. The numbers are very different for Tapped Out. There’s a function of people engaging in content. One thing with branded IP, people talk about the content treadmill. A huge strength of branded IP is, people want new content. You get to tap into somebody’s rich universe and work to expand that.”

He continued, ” First of all, if you’re going to get IP you need to get good IP. It’s not worth paying for Paris Hilton, not to pick on her too much. She had those match-threes, what, seven years ago The IP is worth it when you’re getting that core audience. A limited amount of IP is worthwhile. It will be interesting to see how many of the music games, for example, do well.

“One thing that’s been part of EA’s strategy, with stuff like Madden, we want to go for the premier IPs. That’s where a lot of the benefit comes. What’s powerful about Simpsons is we’ve been able to take it to mobile into live services. I’m not aware of any branded MMO, other than something like Star Trek, where they obviously extended it. Taking a mass-market entertainment brand and essentially almost MMO-ing it on the platform is hard. But we routinely talk to the licensor several times a day. Numerous people work on both sides making sure everything is flowing through. They touch every asset to make sure it’s at quality.”

The full interview can be found here, and the game can be downloaded for iOS and Android now.

Facebook Gains On YouTube: ‘Years of Competition On Horizon’

By Jessica Klein

Facebook has been trying to out-YouTube YouTube for a while now, making moves like tacking “video platform” onto its “social network” epithet, autoplaying videos to grow viewership, allowing for in-video annotations, and suggesting related videos for those using Facebook on mobile devices. Facebook is none too modest to keep from reporting its own success in the video realm, but it still means more when outside sources release figures that show how the social network/video platform is gaining on Google’s YouTube.

Keep reading…

This article was originally posted on VideoInk and is reposted on [a]listdaily via a partnership with the news publication, which is the online video industry’s go-to source for breaking news, features, and industry analysis. Follow VideoInk on Twitter @VideoInkNews, or subscribe via for the latest news and stories, delivered right to your inbox.

Snapchat Founder Pitches New Vertical Video Advertising

Even with the success of his Snapchat service, that isn’t stopping the company’s founder, Evan Spiegel, from trying something different – this time in the way of vertical video advertising.

Per a report from TechCrunch, Spiegel recently traveled to an annual advertising festival in Cannes and put together a video pitch explaining what he has in mind for his new service, 3V Advertising. Standing for Vertical Video Views, the service would introduce a new customizable approach to mobile advertising, without pop-up ads getting in the way. The video can be found below.


Only time will tell if this new program will find its footing. Snapchat does deliver on a large, reliable audience (mainly in the 18-34 age bracket), but whether fans will delve into its advertising program have yet to be seen. Perhaps a livelier approach – one that breaks down the components even better – would do the trick…