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Unity CEO John Riccitiello on why devs need to mix IAPs with video ads

We know how hard it is to make money
Unity CEO John Riccitiello on why devs need to mix IAPs with video ads
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Unite Europe 2016 kicked off with a monster keynote session from Unity, starting with an opening speech from John Riccitiello.

He began by talking about the history of the company and technology, which has grown to having 1.5 million developers using Unity a month.

As the company has grown, its focus has tightened, and now looks to increase productivity, deliver a high-quality product, and monetise the game, because, as Riccitiello says, "we know how hard it is to make money in the games industry."

Money on the table

"A lot of people want to tell you that the opportunities in mobile is dead", he said, due to the fairly fixed grossing charts which seems almost impenetrable.

However, Riccitiello had some suggestions for developers about what would work for mobile developers.

First of all, he said that "the mobile phone is the most social device there is", and suggested that developers should look to synchronous multiplayer as a big opportunity.

Second, he said that developers should use a mixture of IAPs and ads to increase their game's LTV, saying that the top developers are "leaving money on the table" by only focusing on IAPs.

“We know how hard it is to make money in the games industry.”
John Riccitiello

One game he highlighted as a successful game for monetisation was Next Game's The Walking Dead: No Man's Land, which used both rewarded ads and IAPs to great effect.

Get rewarded

To talk more about Unity Ads, Julie Shumaker, Vice President, Business Development of Advertising at Unity, took to the stage to discuss why developers should be making use of its ad package.

She spoke about "delighting players" by offering rewarded video ads, saying that 78% of players are open to viewing rewarded ads, with 18% saying they will always watch the ads when offered.


As an example for a game that made good use of rewarded ads, she mentioned Futureplay's Farm Away!, which sees 22 ads viewed per install, and a continued ARPDAU of $0.15.

Rewarded ads are also shown to increase retention, with a 39% increase in retention in games that add in rewarded ads, and only a 9% drop in players when ads are implemented.

The company also outlined its new subscription plans for developers, which included a new, mid-tier "Plus" plan designed for developers who looking to start effectively monetising their games without the need for all the extras of the more expensive Pro plan.