Posts Tagged in-app purchases
Serj Tankian is best-known for his work with System of a Down, who could be heard all over rock radio in the mid–2000’s, but he’s also embarked on a solo career of his own. In fact, he’s got his third solo album, Harakiri coming out, and to help promote it, there’s a new app, I Am Serj. This lets users remix the vocals from his solo albums (sorry, no System of a Down material here) with special custom loops in order to create custom songs.
There are 30 loops available, and vocals can be added in, with the ability to modify properties including the tempo and pitch of the song to get that perfect remix of the music. The randomizer can be used to find interesting combinations or just to find a good starting point to then modify. Songs can either be exported as MP4 video files, or even as custom ringtones to use. The app is $0.99 to download, with in-app purchases for additional vocals and content, though it can all be unlocked with a single $1.99 IAP.
The original Fishing Joy has proven to be hugely successful across Asia since its release in the second half of 2010, but that popularity hasn’t translated very well to the Western world. With the release of Fishing Joy 2 later this week, we got a chance to check it out and see if this edition will tempt more of the world this time round.
Fishing Joy 2 isn’t actually anything like a fishing sim, despite the name. Instead, it’s a glorified shoot em up aimed at the casual market. Players are presented with an underwater scene with an array of different sea creatures floating around. A tap of the screen unleashes a tirade of bullets and, well, that’s about it.
There’s variety in the form of different weapons that can be used, each with different powers and strengths, but it’s a subtle change that doesn’t really change the basic structure of what’s expected of the player.
Fish are valued differently according to their size with the player given coins for each capture. A multiplier affects how many coins are gained with these pieces leading to gaining levels. It’s a simple enough mechanic with levelling up leading to new scenes to shoot amongst.
Ultimately though, there’s little point to Fishing Joy 2. It’s very pretty to look at and cute in its own way, but there’s seemingly no real draw to returning to it. I found myself playing it till I ran out of coins (which means no more bullets until a refresh or in-app purchase) then leaving disinterested. Lack of structure sometimes doesn’t matter but in the case of Fishing Joy 2, the addition of challenges would have benefited it greatly. As it stands, the action is never-ending but also lacking a strong purpose other than to pass the time.
Regardless, it’ll be fascinating to see how casual gamers across the world react to such a laid back game when Fishing Joy 2 comes out July 12th.
Market Research company Newzoo has just released some pretty interesting facts when it comes to mobile gaming revenue, namely that Apple is dominating the market with 84% of the revenue coming from iOS devices, rather than Android.
The evidence comes from a survey of 17,000 individuals and taking data from the top 200 grossing games in the iOS and Android marketplaces.
It also found that in the USA, mobile gaming grew from 75 million to 101 million players across all platforms, with 69% of players using a smartphone and 21% on tablets.
In that time, paying players have grown 35% to 37 million, with individuals paying 5 times more money in iOS games than with Android.
Much of the in-app purchasing success of iOS titles has been attributed to the “seamless purchase” experience as Newzoo’s CEO Peter Warman explains. Ease of use, after all, makes everything seem so much more appealing and tempting.
All signs point to these figures only increasing in the next year, with the success of the iOS platform far from peaking just yet. It remains fascinating to see how the uptake of smartphones and tablets is changing the games industry.
iOS devices have fast become an essential tool for regular travellers who need to be able to work while on the move. Such devices also come in handy when in need of a way to organize future trips. One newly updated app to help people along the way is WorldMate.
WorldMate does pretty much everything anyone could need when it comes to planning a trip. There’s an itinerary manager which covers flights, hotels, hire cars and meetings. It’s possible to search flight schedules, book hotels (on the iPhone version), search via Yelp, view maps and directions for all itinerary items and check out the local forecast. It’s also possible to check out whether LinkedIn contacts are located nearby, ideal for conferences.
The app is free but regular users can opt to upgrade to WorldMate Gold which offers pushed flight alerts, real-time flight statuses integrated into the itinerary and the ability to sync the calendar.
To celebrate the new update, WorldMate Gold is available for $2.99 for a limited time and normally priced at $9.99.
FaceTime is great for casual video conferencing use but for more professional purposes, a dedicated solution is a better idea. That’s precisely where Fuze Meeting HD enters the equation.
Initially free, Fuze Meeting HD offers online meetings and audio conferencing between two participants. In-app purchases priced at $29.99 or $69.99 then unlocks the ability to communicate with more participants at once.
With the iPad 2, live video can be sent during a video conference with everything viewable in HD. PowerPoint and Keynote presentations can be added, along with Word documents, PDFs and images all possible to add to the Fuze Meeting content library. Meetings can all be simply arranged via the iPad address book for further useful functionality.
When in a call, it’s easy to zoom and pan in, and it’s especially handy to be able to close the app and open other apps without ending the meeting.
It’s a simple yet effective solution for business people in need of regular collaboration while on the move. Fuze Meeting HD is out now.
Graphic novels appear to be going through a bit of a renaissance period in recent times with increasing numbers of people intrigued by the very notion. So it’s pretty cool to see a cumulative effort between a BAFTA (the equivalent of the Emmys in the UK) nominated screenwriter, a BAFTA winning executive producer and an award-winning graphic artist come together in the form of a new iPhone based graphic novel.
The novel entitled Exodus169 is all about an epic journey through space to the Planet Lumina, where humans hope to establish their first colony beyond Earth. Obviously things are bound to not quite go according to plan and it all makes for a gripping novel.
The novel is accompanied by stunning artwork and an original and fully-voiced soundtrack which all add a touch of class to proceedings. Depth is provided through a number of extras such as videos, character profiles, character blogs and even an on-board newspaper with new content uploaded weekly.
It’s interesting stuff and at a decent price too. The app along with Episode 1 and the regularly updated extras are free while Episode 2 and future instalments are only $0.99. Well worth a look for any graphic novel fan.
Game titles nowadays are often just so ambiguous. Boss Battles from Backflip Studios doesn’t muck around with any kind of ambiguity in its title. This is a shoot ‘em up that is pretty much all about the boss battles. There are eight different bosses to take on, each with different attacks and weak spots. When a boss is defeated, the player nets a bounty of gems for the conquest, which can be spent on ship upgrades such as support weapons. Repeat battles get more challenging, but also more lucrative. Defeat will come to the player often, so thankfully each boss fight begins with a wave of normal enemies that are just there for collecting gems, which go toward upgrades. The game is free to play, supported by ads and in-app purchases of additional gems. This all goes without mentioning that the protagonist is a squirrel with a commanding officer who is a bear. Why? Well, why not?
Released: 2011-09-29 :: Category: Games
Back when the App Store was a new and shiny invention, I remember being able to browse the entire contents of the store within the space of an hour at most. These days however, it would take so long to browse the store that more apps would have been added by the time anyone got to the end. While we at 148apps can help iOS owners keep up to date with all the best and most interesting apps out there, even we can miss out on a hidden gem or forgotten bargain. This is precisely where AppZapp enters the picture.
AppZapp promises to be the Bargain Guide for the App Store and a quick glance will confirm that for all. AppZapp keeps track of all the price drops going on at any one time then lists them in appropriately organised lists for easy consultation.
The Live Stream is of particular interest offering a whole bunch of apps that have had their price adjusted. The difference here is that the Stream keeps track of what other users of AppZapp have been downloading at the current time forming an ideal way of seeing exactly what’s popular at any given time. The Top List offers a similar facility along with the option to view the App Store charts easily without having to delve into the App Store app. Sales and Now Free sections supply apps in order of when the price dropped. There’s even an AppZapp news section that informs users of the best apps out there that have recently gone down in price.
AppZapp has the potential to save its users a heck of a lot of money which is pretty impressive stuff for such an inexpensive app. It’s free for iPhone users while a mere $0.99 for a HD iPad version. Users can choose to pay $1.99 to remove ads if they so wish. There’s also the option to pay $0.99 for a Push Service Notification system.
However readers of 148apps don’t have to worry about this as we have an exclusive code to gain that for free! All users have to do is go to Settings and Coupon Code then simply enter 148apps to gain the service for free!
Surely a perfect reason to give AppZapp a try, right?
Released: 2010-08-03 :: Category: News
Released: 2011-04-06 :: Category: Utilities
Bug Heroes, the dual-stick shooter and tower defense hybrid, went freemium earlier this year, with in-app purchases for additional playable characters, new levels, new weapons, and new enemies to fight. However, developer Foursaken Media has decided that due to what they preceive as animosity toward free to play and freemium games being what they describe as “money suckers,” they have released a new version of Bug Heroes with all in-app purchases included. Bug Heroes Deluxe includes all current in-app purchases at the same price as the total of all in-app purchases in the original version of Bug Heroes, totaling 20 characters, 11 environments, and over 50 enemies. People who purchase Bug Heroes Deluxe will get all future IAP content added to regular Bug Heroes for free.
With the current move toward games supported by in-app purchases, this is an interesting move back toward the traditional model of premium apps by Foursaken Media, though even their IAP model of selling content without any kind of consumable content stands out. This is something rare in this day and age, but could appeal to ‘core’ gamers who have a general disposition to in-app purchase content, and would rather get all content at once.
Released: 2011-08-11 :: Category: Games
The potential benefits that iOS devices can present to toddlers and children cannot be stressed enough. Touch based technology lends itself perfectly to children making their way in this technological world. In the case of The Fairy Tale, it combines traditional storytelling elements with the fun of using an iOS device too.
The app sets out to make reading that bit more enjoyable to youngsters by allowing them to create their own tale. Users can create characters and objects that respond to the touch by either moving or making a noise. As well as that illustrations can be moved, expanded, reduced or rotated with a simple touch.
It all makes for an experience that will feel more realistic to a young child than simply reading stagnant pages of texts and looking at pictures. They can finally interact with the tale.
Once a story has been created, users can then share their creations with others and they can store them on a virtual bookshelf for future reference.
The Fairy Tale is a free app with in-app purchases available for Jack and the Beanstalk and Aladdin and The Magic Lamp priced at $2.99 each.
Released: 2011-08-05 :: Category: Books
There is a major sea change occurring on the App Store for game publishers and developers. A clear shift is forming from the traditional premium release model to free to play and freemium titles, as the revenue for free games with in-app purchases dramatically increases, and the prices for paid games goes in the opposite direction.
According to a report recently released by Distimo, the average selling price of the 300 most popular premium games (meaning games that cost money to download) has declined from an average of $2.01 in June 2010, to only $1.44 in June 2011. This decline may be precipitated from an increasing number of publishers facilitating fire sales on their games; EA is particularly notable for their holiday sales where they drop the price on many games down to $0.99, a practice that became extremely lucrative for them when they held a variety of the top app positions on both the iPhone and iPad sides of the App Store.
However, just because the average price of games is on the decline, this does not mean that revenue is declining either; on the contrary, the total revenue from the top 200 grossing games increased by 79% from year to year. A big reason for this increase has come from free to play titles’ in-app purchases, a mechanism that has increased in usage over the past year to the point where in June 2010, revenue from free games’ in-app purchases rated as only 8% of total revenue for the top 200 games. As of June 2011, this rates as 52% of total revenue of the top 200 games on the App Store.
Not only are free to play games now becoming the biggest source of revenue for games on the App Store, they’re also potentially more open for competition. The top 10 publishers of free games account for 27% of the total downloads of the top 300 free games, versus the top 10 publishers of the top 300 paid games generating 54% of those downloads, and one of those publishers is one-man developer Andreas Illiger of Tiny Wings fame. According to Distimo, Tiny Wings generated more downloads than Gameloft’s numerous releases!
As other studies have shown, players who spend money in free to play titles spend more than on premium titles – Flurry notes that the average transaction in a free to play title is $14, a price point that only a few games (approximately 130 of 66,130 total games) have even reached, and a number that includes few notable titles outside of several Square Enix games released around that price point. Games that are shifting to a consumable in-app purchase model are finding that there is real money to be made there from the limited amount of players that do spend money in free to play titles, which appears to average about 3% of users that do spend money on in-app purchases, with some users that spend great amounts of money in these games.
The traditional way of selling games on the App Store is definitely changing, and this data shows that the rush to the bottom continues, as more games reach not just the $0.99 point of entry, but also by letting players download initially for free. However, revenue is still increasing; iOS devices are still being sold. There is still room to make money on the App Store, it’s just that the ways for doing so have dramatically shifted in the last year.