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Apple has been complicit in all of this, taking a 30 percent cut of all in-app purchases. (Google does in the Play Store, as well.) It has also, though, tried to promote apps that take a different road. In 2015, Apple dedicated an entire section of the App Store to “Pay Once and Play” games that, well, you get it. But outside of the occasional breakout hit, these games travel a tough road. Their “freemium” competitors, after all, at first look indistinguishable from free, making them an easier sell. And so studios have gradually drifted away from paid games, making them a relatively endangered species.
“There was this wave of indie games in the last five to 10 years that had a bit of a surge, but it seemed like in the last two or three years that market was starting to fall apart a little bit,” says Ryan Cash, founder of Snowman, the indie studio behind the popular Alto’s Adventure series. “It just became harder and harder for those indie developers to make money doing experimental things. There are many developers I heard say they’ll never make a mobile game again, or if I do it’s going to be free to play.”
Exodus - Numbers - August - Percent - App
That exodus bears out in the numbers. In August 2014, 37 percent of App Store games worldwide were paid, according to app analytics company SensorTower. By last month, that number had dipped to 13 percent. Only 5.5 percent of games released in the App Store this August were paid, versus nearly 25 percent that same month five years ago. And revenue from paid games comprised only 1.4 percent of overall App Store game revenue last month.
The introduction of Apple Arcade won’t suddenly invert those numbers. The biggest publishers will continue to push in-app purchases, and their customers will continue...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Wired
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