Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Is This How Gameloft's 10mil iPhone Game Sales Break Down?


Jon Jordan at had a story today covering Gameloft's announcement that they've sold 10mil iPhone (and iPod touch) Apps since the App Store opened 18mos ago, in which he points out that the French publisher "didn't reveal any per title sales figures." Well, considering my recent fascination with correlating User Ratings with downloads, I thought I'd take a stab at decoding this... just for kicks. In my post on Dec 16th I told y'all that based on some conversations with publishers I was getting comfortable with the notion that each User Rating on a Paid App accounted for 75 downloads as a rule of thumb... I then went on to perform some calculations on iTunes Rewind 2009 to support my thesis. This seemed to work pretty well, as long as I adjusted the numbers to show that casual games downloaders have a lower propensity on average to post a User Rating and that those who downloaded games for gamers have a greater propensity to post one... which made intuitive sense to me.

Well, in looking at the total reviews of Gameloft's 56 Paid App titles as they relate to their 10mil download claim, assuming their title mix is typical of all Paid App games in the store, then it looks like my average number of 75 may have been a little high. Gameloft games have received a total of 163,931 User Ratings and if I divide 10mil by that number I get 61... so maybe that's the right correlation. I still think adjustment for casual and gamerly games are required, but for the spreadsheet above I simply decided to apply the number equally across all titles. The spreadsheet is sorted by downloads and the estimated revenue is based on today's price (so take that with a grain of salt), as opposed to the Estimated Average Price over the game's lifetime I'd use if I had more time (remind me to hire a staff when I get rich off this blog... right). One thing that this does seem to show (if this is correct) is that Gameloft actually does have 1 title with over 1mil paid downloads... "Hero of Sparta" which launched in December 2008.


  1. Gameloft only gets 70% of that $38m, right? So $26m revenue for 56 total titles created and released. If they cost more $460k each (on average) then they arent making any money. Is that the right way to think about this or am I missing something.

  2. @anonymous - yes, their revenue would be 70% of the $38mil or $26.7mil. Where did you get the $460k average development figure?... it seems high to me. But, if that's indeed what they're spending on average, then clearly iPhone is a break-even (or money-losing, considering marketing costs, etc.) business for them.