They intend to avoid console streaming…
We recently reported that Netflix was venturing into the world of video-game streaming. Well, we now know that they intend to adopt a mobile-first approach to video games, at least initially.
This is according to the service’s Q2 earnings report, which outlined that it was at “the early stages of further expanding into games” and viewed “gaming as another new content category.” The games are expected to be based on their original IPs.
Netflix has dabbled in gaming in the past, releasing a Stranger Things mobile game for iOS in 2017, alongside 2018’s interactive film Black Mirror: Bandersnatch containing video game elements.
Of course, both of these were one-off experiments; this recent development seems to be the result of a measured attempt to enter the gaming market. Netflix also confirmed that the games will be available to subscribers at no additional cost, making it extremely competitive compared to other platforms like Apple Arcade, which costs £4.99 ($4.99) per month. The games will also not have in-app purchases or ads.
The mobile gaming aspect makes sense from a business standpoint. It would be extremely risky to attempt competing on the console game streaming front with the technology powerhouses that are Microsoft, Sony, Google, Amazon etc. Particularly as the latter two companies, despite being colossal in stature, have struggled with their own launches (which signifies the challenge Netflix would face in also taking this route). Evidently, it would be harder (to say the least) to jump in the ring of console streaming and go toe to toe with these heavyweights.
Similarly, the platform enters South East Asia and sub-Saharan Africa with low-cost mobile-only plans, adding further rationale from a business perspective.
It is an exciting development, and we will be monitoring how Netflix’s video game venture plays out.
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