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  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    May 2005

    the truth about mobile market

    Hello to all new developers,

    I just wanted to share the truth about the market so you might save your time and money. All this market for games is just a hype.
    Nokia is encouraging developing games for mobile devices as it supposedly is lucrative business. You can read success cases and other documents that has nice financial calculations about expected profits that work only in theory. You wont find any statistics about real life there.
    So you will spend $$$ developing a new game for a few months then you spend another 400$ for Nokia OK certification (for a game that will never sell) and will submit your brand new game to Nokia marketplace or Handango.
    Then in 99% cases you will sell less than 10 copies in a month. Nice profit? You can check statistics for games on Handango site.
    Only established companies that work with network operators have some returns but I doubt if even them are making real profits right now.

    Unfortunately this is the truth that small companies and single developers will only loose money on this.

    Also keep in mind that when you release your game in most cases Digital Rights Management won't be used. Distributors do not care to protect your game against piracy even if the technology exist. So the game will be shortly accessible for free on multiple pirate sites and discussion boards.

    Hope this helps some,

    Any commets are welcome.

  2. #2
    Super Contributor
    Join Date
    Mar 2003
    Last year something like 670 million mobile phones were sold. Probably at least 200-300 million of them were Java capable. Maybe 50-60 million were so called smartphones with a high-level operating system such as Symbian. So there is definitely a big market out there, and it is growing year by year.

    Just making an app and putting it in a catalog or two for someone to possibly find is not enough to make any app a success (unless it is really, really exceptional and people discover it and do your marketing for you; so called viral marketing).

    You need to actively market/promote it through the web, magazines and even television advertisements, operator and other distributor relations (including various user forums and bulleting boards), make sure there is a trial app available, support superdistribution by users, etc.

    Use as many channels as you can reach, or try to partner with somebody that knows how.

    It also has to be a good and useful app (and not just in your own opinion, but many other people have to think it, too!!) There are plenty of bad or even lousy apps sold that should never have been released.

    There are also good application ideas with a poor implementation. Or apps with a good appearance, but little value inside. Such apps won't sell either.

    Unique ideas are also better than "also-ran-me-too-copy" apps (another "better" mousetrap). The users aren't in a need of yet another Tetris clone, Reversi/Othello or MP3 player.

    Also, very few have the abilty create a single successful app to make them wealthy; and it is hard work, trial-and-error, multiple versions, before you get it right.

    And even so, you may have it difficult if it is only one app that you have, when success may mean that you have to have machinery that can turn out many apps a year for sustainable revenue.

    Nevertheless, there are a number of success cases (single apps or companies with multiple apps) already, but also remember that it is a relatively young market and most end-users still have to learn that they actually can buy software for their phones, and then find them and get and pay for them easily.

    P.S. The "Nokia OK" program has been discontinued a good while ago; now it is Symbian Signed (http://www.symbiansigned.com) or Java Verified (http://www.javaverified.com/) for Symbian and Java app signing, respectively.

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Nov 2003
    hmm I always wondered about those success stories...

    but I agree selling yourself like on Handango doesnt give any substantial income, but imo I think as the market will mature more and more quality content will be made. And hopefully they will realize soon that Java is not made for game development on mobiles and people will use then polarbit.com 's Fuse, or fathammer.com 's XForge engine only to deliver quality games, if were honest, a 128*128 display is not meant to play games that are substantial either. More memory, more freedom, unfortunately as the devices get better and better there seem to be more and more bugs, like the 6600 has like 10 A4 pages of "known issues". Device fragmentation and bugs in devices is really killing the small developer in my oppinion and costs the most money during development.

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