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BizReport : Advertising archives : May 31, 2011

Goodbye to "try-buy" gaming models?

New figures from Exent, owner of, show the traditional "try before you buy" gaming model being threatened by ad-supported titles.

by Helen Leggatt

Traditionally, free games were available on a "try-buy" basis. Developers hedged their bets on whether a player would be engaged enough to pay to continue playing after a free period of game-play had elapsed.

However, according to new data released by Exent, that gaming model is being overtaken by ad-supported versions that are far more profitable - in some cases generating 3 to 7 times higher revenues than the "try-buy" model.

"Basically that comes from making much more money per user," Kobi Edelstein, vice president and general manager of Exent's Free Game Services division told Gamasutra.

"It boils down to the fact that in the try-[then]-buy model, prices have been driven down by the big distributors. Where they were $20 a few years ago, now they're averaging $6.99. And conversion rates were always low. You'd be getting hundreds of thousands of users downloading a game, but only 1 or 2 percent were buying."

Previous reports have shown that consumers of digital content are happy to view ads in exchange for free content, however there are concerns about the high incidence of accidental clicks on smaller mobile screens.

Tags: ad models, ad-supported, game monetization, PC gaming

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