Published: Wed, April 17, 2019
Electronics | By Shannon Stone

Analysts Report Apple's Games Subscription Service Will Spend Over Half a Billion

Analysts Report Apple's Games Subscription Service Will Spend Over Half a Billion

According to Financial Times, Apple could be spending more than $500 million in developing and building the game lineup of the Apple Arcade.

With the service set to launch in the Fall of 2019, the half billion commitment is a massive investment, proportional to what Apple hopes to achieve: - Revive the interest in paid games in an era when free-to-play is the accepted and dominant way to sell a mobile game.

Apple is also reportedly offering developers extra incentives if they agree to make their games temporarily exclusive to Arcade. They're downloaded and installed on the device, not streamed, which means they can be played offline.

These exclusive games could prove expensive for Apple; according to CNet, "sources informed the Financial Times that numerous games in the works have budgets in the millions". In comparison, Apple retains 50% of the $9.99/month subscription fee it earns from Apple News+, and the remaining 50% is shared to publishers based on engagement with their respective content. While games such as the anticipated Beyond a Steel Sky will be allowed to go to PC and consoles, there will have "a few months of exclusivity" on Apple's service first.

It sounds promising, but clearly Apple needs a strong game portfolio for Arcade to be successful.

Additionally, Apple Arcade games will not be offered on the App Store as normal downloads.

Arcade will be focused on indie titles but Apple will be working with more familiar names in the industry such as Sony and Lego.

With $1 million to $3 million advances paid upfront, developers will be able to invest toward high-quality games without worrying about money. The partnerships announced so far all come from developers with established track records in mobile gaming, many of whom have already released hit titles on the App Store. Pricing hasn't been announced yet.

Though the price for the monthly Arcade gaming service is not revealed yet, it is expected the rollout in this year autumn.

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