Game Development Reference
In-Depth Information
Chapter 14
Future Trends and Opportunities for iOS
In This Chapter
Surveying upcoming trends for the iOS
Understanding the future of iOS games in China: overview and advice from Yodo's Henry Fong
In 2012 it became increasingly clear that the future of gaming platforms would be dominated in great part by
tablets, a category ovewhelmingly owned by the iPad. According to a Business Insider forecast from February
2012, by the time we reach 2015, tablet unit sales will reach nearly 500 million, while sales will grow at an ap-
proximately 50 percent compound annual growth rate. The PC market is too large to go away any time soon. But
the iPad and its smaller iPhone cousin will increasingly influence the direction of game development. It's likely
we soon won't even think of “Facebook games” or “web games” as separate categories, because those games
will be made to work on and with the iPad's web browser and iOS's Facebook connectivity. For this reason, it's
especially important to consider the future of games on iOS—even if you don't develop for that platform.
Surveying Upcoming iOS Trends: Experts
Weigh In
As earlier chapters did with the other two platforms, this chapter takes a 1-2 year look ahead at likely trends in
iOS that game developers should consider when working on projects today. The following sections describe these
upcoming trends in detail.
Free-to-Play Will Remain King
Echoing the opinion of many experts, Tiger Style's Randy Smith believes the free-to-play approach “will contin-
ue to dominate for some time.” For someone like Smith, who came from the PC/console world, he adds, “I have
mixed feelings about that. There's always been a degenerate approach to making money in entertainment media
across time, but that doesn't mean you have to follow the trends and cash in. Instead, you can be inventive about
how to improve the experience players are having and thereby open a niche to design into.”
However, he suggests a way for developers to approach this new model. “It can be depressing as a designer to
think of giving away the elaborate creation you slaved over, but that's probably not the right way to think about
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