HTML5 has taken the lead from Flash as a mobile development platform. Crowdstar CEO Peter Relan, however, has open doubts of Facebook’s HTML5 development platform for game developers.
“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,” he said. “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.”
Crowdstar decided to move their Project Trident away from Facebook only to include mobile, and other social networks in Asian markets. “That’s been a change over the past year from our default-Facebook position in 2010,” added Relan. “Zynga is the main other company that has been making this type of move to focus on multiple platforms.”
Relan thinks that mobile-social gaming was worth $500 million during 2011. However, he thinks that only $100 million is being spent through Android devices and that Google needs to enact measures to make payment easier for its customers.
“The thing about Android is obviously monetization,” said Relan. “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. 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.”