Angry Birds Still Rules As Draw Something Fades Into the Background

A recent study done by Lightspeed Research concluded that smartphone users are more likely to use their device for fun then tablet users, citing that 73% of smartphone users access social sites via mobile apps daily while tablet users access functional apps such as business apps (63%) or finance/banking apps (56%) daily rather than social networking apps (32%).  But the study also showed that tablet users are more likely to pay for apps than smartphone users.

“It is clear that smartphone and tablet users are multi-taskers, with many using their devices to browse the web and update social networks whilst taking part in other activities, like watching TV,” said Ralph Risk, Lightspeed Marketing’s marketing director (Europe).

“But with the different content usage and take-up rates on smartphones compared to tablets, brands and marketers need to ensure that they are providing apps that meet the different needs of consumers when using those two devices, be that business, gaming or social.”

But personally, I prefer using a tablet when I’m wasting time playing Angry Birds, Draw Something or Shark Dash.  I just enjoy playing games on gadgets with bigger screens.  And it seems I’m not the only one.

Rovio’s profitable Angry Birds franchise

Who would have thought that a game with birds, a slingshot, and a bunch of pigs would be so popular?  Since Rovio launched Angry Birds in 2009, the world has been captivated by flinging birds, vindictively aimed at dubious pigs out to steal their precious eggs.

Rovio revealed that the franchise of Angry Birds games have been downloaded 648 million times, with some 200 million active users last year.  They also reported revenue of  just under $99 million last year, while pretax profit was about $62.6 million, translating into a pretax profit margin of 64%.

“We are very optimistic about 2012 due to significant investments in product development, cutting-edge branding, brand protection and corporate infrastructure,” said Rovio Chief Executive Mikael Hed.

Rovio launched Angry Birds Space in March and has been downloaded over 50 million times just  35 days.  The company is now looking into going public, which would likely happen sometime next year.

“This company is preparing itself and getting ready,” said Anders Lindeberg, Rovio’s head of investor relations, adding the firm was working on meeting corporate governance requirements.

Draw Something loses players’ interest

I’ve recently raved about this app, how addictive it is but as I’ve said before, no matter how great or fun an app is, it’s always subject to picky gamers that can easily be distracted by something else.  And as expected, Draw Something’s appeal seems to be fading.

WebMediaBrands stated that they lost five million daily users in the past month, and reported that monthly users are also declining after experiencing a huge spike last April.

“It’s a great game for the first hour or two,” Ben Griffin, from Know Your Mobile told the BBC in an interview. “But then you get inundated with all the requests, and it becomes more of a chore. It’s short-lived fun – once the novelty expires that’s it really.”

This news isn’t really surprising but it’s certainly bad news for Zynga who bought OMGPOP, creator of Draw Something, for $200 million on the day Rovio launched Angry Birds Space.

If Zynga wants their acquisition money to not go to waste, they need to think of something to keep people interested in Draw Something by reinventing it or creating other versions, as Rovio has done with Angry Birds.

Temple Run craze

Spin Master Games recently partnered with Imangi Studios to bring Temple Run, the app that’s been downloaded more than 60 million times on iOS and Android, to Mass Retails Stores this Fall with new titles.

Spin Master Games will capture the essence of Temple Run’s mobile gaming in traditional games, including card games and board games with electronic features.

“Temple Run is an incredible hit enjoyed by tens of millions of people worldwide, and we are looking forward to this great opportunity to bring it to another medium,” said Keith Shepherd, CEO of Imangi Studios.

Shark Dash chomps its way to the top

And Gameloft’s not one to let indie developers like Rovio and OMGPOP have all the fun.  Their recent physics puzzle app, Shark Dash, is quickly climbing to the top spot in Apple’s App Store since its release last April and had been given top ratings in leading markets.

“We are very proud to offer such a novel gaming experience for our fans to enjoy,” states Julien Fournials, Gameloft Senior Vice President of Production. The extremely accessible gameplay, thenever-seen use of water at the heart of the game system, and the quality of its graphics make Shark Dash one of the most polished arcade games on the App Store right now. We invested a lot of resources in the creation of a unique world and an original storyline starring irresistible characters.”