Pokemon GO Has Lost 79% of Its Paying Population, Still Profitable

Pokemon GO Has Lost 79% of Its Paying Population, Still Profitable

The amount of players paying for in-game purchases in Pokemon GO has dropped considerably.

Pokemon GO was somewhat of a phenomenon, blowing up all over the world and re-igniting that "gotta catch 'em all" spark we haven't seen since the 90s. But is the fad already waning? Last month we reported that it had lost 15 million active users and now, a report from Slice Intelligence claims that the game's paying population is down a massive 79%. What's even more surprising is that despite this, Pokemon GO is still the most profitable mobile game by a considerable margin.

First, check out this chart showing Pokemon GO's sharp rise in popularity, followed by its almost equally sharp drop:

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Then, have a look at this revenue chart, which shows Pokemon GO making over six times the money that the second highest game, Candy Crush Saga makes:

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This is very interesting, and supports the "whale" theory of free-to-play mobile games. Essentially, a very small portion of a mobile game's playerbase spends an inordinate amount of money on the game, which is what generates the majority of its profits. As the paying playerbase has dropped considerably, but the game is still making bank, this is a reasonable explanation.

Slice gets its data from e-receipts - not a browser, app or software installed by the end-user - so its measurement reflects comprehensive shopping behavior across multiple devices, over time which are key in an increasingly omnichannel retail world. Slice Intelligence is the exclusive e-commerce data provider for the NPD's Checkout Tracking e-commerce service.

Source: Slice Intelligence

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And at the bottom of that drop, it's still got 20M people using it, one fifth of the 100M people playing every other game available on mobile.

That's remarkable. So it's gone from being "The End All Of Mobile Gaming" to "Basically The End All Of Mobile Gaming".

I'm no expert but I imagine that this kind of spike-drop happens to every f2p game, just not on this scale. I'm just glad that there's finally a mobile game dominating the market that isn't COMPLETE TRASH.

Is anyone surprised? Of course once the initial surge was over they'd lose people, that was never going to be a long term revenue source, but they were always going to keep lots of other players unless the game was totally rubbish.

Johnson McGee:
I'm no expert but I imagine that this kind of spike-drop happens to every f2p game, just not on this scale. I'm just glad that there's finally a mobile game dominating the market that isn't COMPLETE TRASH.

As one who does not like Pokemon at all, my opinion differs from yours. Just saying.

OT: I kinda' wish these things didn't pop up in the first place. I'd rather play Tetris, which of course is available...everywhere.

Just think what their numbers would be if they would fix the damn game....

irish286:
Just think what their numbers would be if they would fix the damn game....

Or add battles to the game. Find some random person out in the world, and challenge them to a Pokebattle.

Well duh. The fact a puppy did something cute on YouTube was a legitimate threat to Pokemon Go, let alone Cats, babies, video games,peoples and everything else.

008Zulu:

irish286:
Just think what their numbers would be if they would fix the damn game....

Or add battles to the game. Find some random person out in the world, and challenge them to a Pokebattle.

I am seriously still baffled that battling was in the game from the get-go. It's so obvious.

Now I wouldn't be able to make a good estimation of this but does anyone know whether they might have already made back their money. If they made more sales in juli than the rest of the mobile gaming market combined, and this game wasn't hugely more expensive to make than other mobile games, I'd expect them to already be rolling in cash. Anything from now on is just pure profit for them, I'd expect. And even if their sales get devided by 5 another time, they'll still be top dog in terms of money made.

Also, of course they weren't going to have a stable player base that massive for that long. It was clearly a hype that is by now dying down. A lot of people have had their fun with it and will now move on. And if they retain 1 million players for a longer time that is still quite an accomplishment.

008Zulu:

irish286:
Just think what their numbers would be if they would fix the damn game....

Or add battles to the game. Find some random person out in the world, and challenge them to a Pokebattle.

Thing is, battling and event encounters are features that were shown in the official trailer.

They said they're on the way, but unfortunately, it's not an overnight process.

Buddy Pokemon and Pokemon Go+ just got here after 2 months (1 month after the final rollout). So that might be reflective on the space we'll see between updates.

Pseudonym:
Now I wouldn't be able to make a good estimation of this but does anyone know whether they might have already made back their money. If they made more sales in juli than the rest of the mobile gaming market combined, and this game wasn't hugely more expensive to make than other mobile games, I'd expect them to already be rolling in cash.

First article I found said this: http://www.vinereport.com/article/pokemon.go.release.date.gameplay.game.now.has.30m.budget.niantic.excited.to.expand.real.world.gaming.platform/3885.htm

I didn't reach much of it to verify, or look very diligently, as it's a pain on my phone.

But it'd be hard to imagine a budget over $100m, if we're being extremely generous on estimates. Even then, they likely made their money back even before hitting the peak of that 120 million spike.

They could close down and cash out now, and the development team would be set for life, most likely.

I stopped playing cos with each 'update' they seem to make the game worse. Just fix the issues first and maybe I'll come back to it.

There is no endgame to Pok?mon Go.
Collecting pokemon is a fun novelty but there is nothing to do with them. Its pretty obvious that no Pok?mon lineup is tough enough to actually hold a gym for any real length of time. The best defense is justa gym with a high enough level that players refuse to slog through the clickfest gym battles.
The game just gets more aggravating as you get higher level, with even basic pokemon like weedle and pidgey becoming annoying to catch. Also the missing Dex entries become harder and harder to fill as they just don't spawn in your region.

So far all the updates have been about making collecting pokemon easier, I wont be paying cent till we get something to do with them.

Well if Niantic is believed this is a drop from "oh god it's the apocalypse" to "beyond our wildest expectations". I think they're okay with it.

Now, can we get an "It prints money" gif in here

Even if Pokemon Go wasn't making as much as other games, it's done wonders for Nintendo's Pokemon games on the 3DS. It's making money on both fronts (On Mobile and bringing in more money for the DS systems) which is pretty damn awesome.

And i'd imagine the numbers will spike again once Gen2 is released.

Gibbagobba:

008Zulu:

irish286:
Just think what their numbers would be if they would fix the damn game....

Or add battles to the game. Find some random person out in the world, and challenge them to a Pokebattle.

I am seriously still baffled that battling was in the game from the get-go. It's so obvious.

While a key part of the series, I think the main stumbling block is trying to figure out a way to implement them that can't be exploited or encourage asshole-ish behavior.
There is already a lot of news stories about people setting lures and then mugging people who show up, if you start adding a "Proper" Player-vs-Player system, it might cause more such behavior because people are dicks.

That and in a lot of F2P games, one of the biggest issue is that the "Whales" have so much more power then normal players because of how the business model is set up, something (I hope) the developers are aware of and want to avoid so the best players aren't just the ones who use their credit card to stomp on everyone else.
So yeah...it sounds simple on paper but there are a lot of things to address before they even get to the part of playtesting it and ensuring it's even fun.

Stupidity:
There is no endgame to Pok?mon Go.
Collecting pokemon is a fun novelty but there is nothing to do with them. Its pretty obvious that no Pok?mon lineup is tough enough to actually hold a gym for any real length of time. The best defense is justa gym with a high enough level that players refuse to slog through the clickfest gym battles.
The game just gets more aggravating as you get higher level, with even basic pokemon like weedle and pidgey becoming annoying to catch. Also the missing Dex entries become harder and harder to fill as they just don't spawn in your region.

So far all the updates have been about making collecting pokemon easier, I wont be paying cent till we get something to do with them.

Me and a few of my mates managed to rank up a gym to level 10, we held it for nearly 2 weeks.

But yeh i get what you mean, have enough Snorlax's, Lapras's Exeggutors and Vaporeons in a gym and it's practically impossible to beat on your own.

Thaluikhain:
Is anyone surprised? Of course once the initial surge was over they'd lose people, that was never going to be a long term revenue source, but they were always going to keep lots of other players unless the game was totally rubbish.

And if i'm not mistaken, the game hasn't even been released everywhere yet, pretty sure there are still a few countries that don't have it, yet are expected to get at some point.

Let's be honest, this is the typical half life of a mobile game. I mean the game is still dominating the mobile market more then WoW dominated the MMO market at its peak, and this is after a massive downfall. Is it any wonder the thing is still profitable (though let's be honest, how expensive can it be?)

Its almost like making a game with the depth of a pool built for dipping toes in won't hold peoples attention very long! Yeah...I always knew that Pokemon GO would be a fad, just like flappy bird and angry birds before it, fad is one letter away from fade and without something to bring people back...we get massive population drops like this

It's the most addictive games ever. If you want to spend time, you can play logic games at http://www.friv4online.com/ . They help you to improve you mental abilities!

not bad for a live beta, just imagine when the gave comes out in full and has enough features to make it worth playing

It could always spike again if they added features that... I don't know... ...Made it good. :-|
Also there's the whole thing about how fast is spiked and it's probably still waving around the stats for how many people downloaded, and how active the people whom are still playing are. You just gotta show supportive data to make it look like you're doing well (which they obviously are).

 

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