This is fascinating stuff. It’s all about getting the right model (and of course having monster success in terms of usage and recognition). As film companies have learnt over the decades, sometimes the initial product is just the doorway to the licensing revenues (see <a href=”http://www.hollywoodreporter.com/news/disney-cars-has-crossed-8-99438“>Disney’s Cars franchise</a>):
Rovio seems to have calculated that it can make more money from people buying bird- and pig-decorated paraphernalia than off games themselves, which is why it no longer charges to play. “We look at this from the audience-reach point of view,” executive vice president for games at Rovio Jami Laes told the Wall Street Journal.
Colour me intrigued. Van Lancker is one of a trio involved in new ebook venture Oyster (good description and round up of the issues the start up will face by Martyn Daniels here). I found the section posted below in a rather interesting essay on Van Lancker’s blog. It suggests that ebooks are but the tip of Oyster’s iceberg of ambition and that while the public facing pitch is one that speaks of Spotify, the goal is actually something more refined controlled than that:
We are at an exciting impasse for the accessibility of content (e.g., images, writing), but simultaneously are confronted with a litany of services focused on incomplete collection and organization. This abundance of sources, media types, and proprietary systems has led to a fragmented and often frustrating environment. Few services promise the comprehensiveness of being your definitive library. Netflix, while likely replacing many viewers DVD libraries, offers no tools for curation and no sense of collection apart from a to-watch list queue.