ICT professionals are rapidly exploiting opportunities that development of gaming software is gaining in the market. DEMO Africa, the launch pad for emerging technologies will be launching 3 gaming products; Spyros Entertainment from Egypt, Kenya’s Jooist and Nigeria’s ChopUp.
ChopUp from Nigeria is a social platform that connects mobile device gamers across Africa and then allows them interact based on in-game achievements and points which can be transferred across games. The software is currently available for Java enabled handsets and feature phones, but is moving into the smart phone territory.
Bayo Puddicombe the Co-Founder of Danfo started working on the concept after he and his team did a marketing promotion on their block-buster game Danfo Reloaded where players could win up to 100,000 naira (about $600) for being one of the top two scorers every week for a 5 week period. They found that there was a lot of conversation amongst players on social media that they were missing on.
“The most interesting part of ChopUP as a driver for innovation is its potential to open up monetization possibilities not just for us, but also for other developers across Africa,” said Bayo.
The team is determined to change the game in mobile content discovery across Africa, and also help developers capture value from their users. ChopUp currently boasts of $315,000 profit application by targeting the African market which is predominantly a feature phone market.
Being a relatively new frontier, setting up the product has had its fair share of challenges.
“One of our biggest challenges was around fine-tuning the business model for ChopUP especially when there were external dependencies of established channels in supporting industries,” said Bayo.
The team hopes to exploit the chance to pitch at DEMO Africa to show the world that they have the capacity to develop cutting-edge innovative solutions out of Africa and also help their business move to the next level.
According to infographic gaming statistics for 2011, the mobile gaming industry is predicted to reach $54 Billion by 2015, 84% of tablet owners play games while 70 – 80% of all mobile downloads are games. Android is soon to overtake Apple in number of total available apps, and in-game purchases should overtake pay-per-downloads by 2013 Angry Birds has been downloaded 140 million times. Developers made $87 million in ad revenue in 2010 and will grow 10 fold by 2015